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November 29, 2008


L.A. Women in Music and Professional Musicians Union present a Holiday Gift Bazaar, on December 6, at the Union Hall on Vine Street in Hollywood.

Offered are music industry panels, along with a variety of vendors of jewelry, toys, books, clothing, and more.

More information at LAWIM's website: www.lawim.com.

November 23, 2008


Bel Air Camera invites you to come in with your family for a free portrait photo with Santa on the following days:

Sat. Nov 29, Noon -3:00

Fri, Dec 5, Noon -3:00

Sat. Dec 6, Noon-3:00.

And, this fine store also has "everyday Outstanding Values" at www.belaircamera.com.

If for some reason you don't like Santa, but love family portraits, I suppose you can make sure the Big Bearded One is positioned at the end, then crop the Great Gift Guy out with Photoshop. But really -- who doesn't love Santa?

Free family portraits with Santa Claus. Nov29, Dec5, Dec6. Address: Bel Air Camera, 10925 Kinross Avenue, Westwood Village, Los Angeles, California, 90024.

November 22, 2008

NOV 22: Beverly Hills Lighting Ceremony and Holiday Celebration; Free; Fireworks Finale

November 22 brings a favorite festive fete back to Beverly Hills, as they kick off the holiday season with style. Partake of holiday shopping sure to suit every taste, and holiday tastes sure to satisfy every palette.

Holiday street festivities begin at 3:00 pm in the 200 and 300 blocks of Rodeo Drive where adults and children alike will enjoy musical entertainment, balloon artists, and face painters – and, oh yes, have the opportunity to have their photo taken with the big guy in the red suit.

The “big show” starts at 6:00 pm with a live stage show, culminating in the lighting of the spectacular UNICEF crystal snowflake and 20 one-of-a-kind Baccarat chandeliers along Rodeo Drive.

And if that’s not enough, you’ll be treated to the fireworks finale above the iconic Beverly Wilshire Hotel. It’s all free – including the two hours of free parking at the City parking structures on Beverly and Canon Drives.

Nov 22, 2008. Ring in the holidays in Beverly Hills. Free. Location: 200 and 300 blocks of Rodeo Drive. Rumor is that Joel Madden and Nicole Richie may be there (they are listed on the web as being part of this celebration), so there is even a celeb factor here. Heck, it'll be loads of fun no matter who shows up. www.lovebeverlyhills.org.

November 20, 2008


Recommendation by Don Rose

If I was going to design my own music station on the radio, I would follow a few simple rules. I would play only good pop-oriented music, tending toward the rock end of the spectrum, with solid memorable melodies, regardless of what decade it was from. Good is good, after all, whether it's a single, a less-known album cut, live recording, studio cut, a sixties super seller or a brand new tune. I would also honor the music -- that is, not talk over it, let it play from beginning to end. And I would pick low-key less-talky DJs who talk softly and carry no big schtick.

Well, someone beat me to it. It's here in Los Angeles, and it's called THE SOUND. "World Class Rock" is their motto. Check it out at 100.3 FM. They play the best cool tunes, from five decades worth of great music (60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and 00s). If you need a comparison, think of it as a more eclectic, less Top-40-ish version of JACK FM. It's just better. Another way to describe it: imagine if Jack and KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic had a child. That's The Sound, baby.

Recent artists/songs I enjoyed on The Sound include Elvis Costello, ELP (Emerson, Lake and Palmer, "In The Beginning"), Talking Heads (live "Burning Down the House"), brand new Counting Crows, Peter Gabriel ("Sledgehammer"), Stevie Wonder ("I Wish" from "Songs in the Key of Life" album), Jane's Addiction, Joe Cocker, a new Scottish band called Gloss Vegas, Jack Johnson, and the song that launched a thousand wedding receptions in the seventies, "Beginnings" (from Chicago's debut album, and they played the WHOLE thing, down to the last percussive notes). I especially love all the eighties tunes I am hearing here, since most other stations tend to gloss over or ignore that most poppish of decades. Give it a try, LA. You won't be disappointed.

Best Bet (Radio): The Sound. 100.3 FM. Likeability Index: 92 (I liked 92 percent of what they played).

November 19, 2008


by Don Rose

No matter what the state of our economy happens to be, there is one industry that never seems to slow down in terms of growth year after year: videogames! Every year brings more splashy debuts of hot new games, and now this week brings the latest lavish launch - Need For Speed: Undercover. Yes, the highly anticipated videogame is now in stores, as of 11.18.08. You can learn more about Need For Speed: Undercover at their website, http://www.needforspeed.com/.

Plus, for you gamers who want to dig even deeper, there is another site where you can check out video coverage of Need For Speed: Undercover, including producer interviews, game trailers, as well as developer commentary: http://www.gametrailers.com/game/9796.html.

EA Games is even hosting a big red-carpet launch party and car exhibition this Thursday to further promote the launch of this new game. The private invite-only Need For Speed event, taking place in Los Angeles, is perfectly timed on the eve of the upcoming LA Auto Show, the annual car confab which begins this weekend.

So, if you're feeling that Need For Speed, make sure to check out this new game, now in stores everywhere. It's sure to get your blood... racing.

November 17, 2008


by Don Rose

The friendly man who runs Yogurt Express in Westwood (just opened a short while ago) told me his four yogurt flavors (Chocolate, French Vanilla, Coffee and Tart) are fat-free, no sugar added. They tasted great. I chose to buy a mix of chocolate and vanilla, and was very satisfied.

I love their concept: "Pay by the ounce", which can help you control your cost and calories. The service was very quick, and there is a scale on the counter to help you figure out when to say when. All the cups are the same size -- nice and large, so any toppings you get won't spill on the floor.

Yogurt Express takes cash and credit cards. They have a few tables to sit and eat, plus a bench just outside.


And, I enjoyed the TV they have, which shows Danoo TV, an in-store silent infotainment service that is becoming popular (Westwood's Subway also has it). Danoo shows videos from YouTube, stock quotes, weather, local events and more. Very cool.
Overall, The LA Report loves Yogurt Express, one of our Best Bets for your Dessert cravings. Next time, I hope to try the Dr. Bob's Ice Cream they also offer, which has gotten rave reviews (see the 10 BEST photo).

Yogurt Express, 10878 Kinross, just West of Glendon, Westwood Village, L.A., CA.

November 16, 2008


Commentary by Don Rose

A: Audacity of Hope. Not just a Barack book, but a brand, a message, that millions believed in. After eight years of fear, hope prevailed. Yet think back to early 2007. Imagine the audacity of a young relatively unknown first-term Senator of African-American descent to hope he can beat the odds and become leader of the free world. Yes he can.

B: Bush. Yes, baby, Bush begat Barack. Yin begat Yang. One can argue that Bush devolved so deeply into a fear-mongering Constitution-shredding neo-Conning rightwing idealogue that the nation snapped back with a vengeance to the intelligent, erudite, anti-Iraq pragmatist candidate -- Obama -- who seems to be above ideology. Out of fear, hope.

C: Clinton. Hillary's hard fought battle against Obama made Barack a tougher, wiser candidate, and got almost all the dirty laundry out in the open early. Remember when Rocky and arch rival Apollo Creed team up to beat Mr T? Okay, not a perfect analogy, but I still love that movie.

D: Dean. Howard Dean was Net Candidate 1.0 way back in 2004. Smart and tech savvy, the first true Internet grassroots candidate. While Obama's version 2.0 was superior to the original Dean model, the Vermont visionary and his network guru Joe Trippi pointed the way. Howard's other influence on Obama's win came as DNC head. In that role, Dr. Dean championed the "50 State Strategy" that kept GOP strategists scrambling and helped Obama expand his base to "traditionally non-Democratic states" -- even win several of them.

E: Economy. No con on me! That's how many felt, and still feel -- like the $700 billion bailout revealed a con going on, causing collapse of a broken system and then, like poisonous icing on a stale cake, using gobs of taxpayer money to bail out fat cats. Yes, it is always "the economy, stupid". Voters vote their pocketbook if it's getting lean. Bad economy helped Obama, big time. But it wasn't just that, it was Bad Men. Constant bailout news made it look like those in power (GOP) had taken advantage, then wanted to do even more damage (taxpayer bailouts) that might not even work (wanna buy some toxic financial instruments?). Also helping Obama, ironically, was that his relatively light experience made him look even more like an outsider, hence one who could come in and clean house.

F: Fairey. Shepard Fairey's graphics gave the Barack brand its ubiquitous face. His iconic HOPE posters were copied, mimicked and parodied ad infinitum, which only helped spread the brand further.

G: Gore. When Al didnt run, the best non-Barack brand in the bunch went bye-bye, leaving Obama as the leading "CHANGE" agent.

H: History. Millions wanted to make it, and they did. In fact, I think history's call led to a kind of "reverse Tom Bradley Effect", where voters on the fence jumped more to Obama in order to be part of history. Also, African Americans voted in record numbers. Call it the "being black bump". It helped the Change wind grow to gale force.

I: Iowa. First Obama victory, surprising Clinton and the pundits, foretold the future. Most momentum-al moment. I know Obama must be thinking, "I owe a lot to Iowa." (Okay, maybe not Obama, but Iowans.)

J: JFK. The similarities between Obama and John Kennedy are many. Even JFK brother Ted acknowledged it. Both men: young in age, two young kids, young attractive wife, picked experienced Senator as running mate, and broke barriers (JFK was first Roman Catholic President, and of course Obama is first President to check email regularly).

K: Kerry. Democrats learned from the mistakes of 2004. GOPers tried to Swift Boat Obama like they did Kerry, but the Obama camp was ready. Every attack was immediately and strongly rebuked or counterattacked. It worked.

L: Love. Young people were definitely showing the love for Obama, in droves, and were relentless in getting out the vote, calling people in swing states, holding rallies and parties in support of Obama, and more. With Gore in 2000 and Kerry in 2004, Democrats may have been satisfied with their candidate, even admired them, but twasn't love.

M: Moveon.org. Their more-than-daily emails kept Obama on the brain, whether you liked it or not. They relentlessly informed of urgent needs for funds and house parties/events where one could help the cause. Kept essential info coming to an ever expanding base of net-savvy supporters. Got the word out, kept the brand afire. (But be honest, aren't you kinda glad the flood of messages is finally over? Even The Onion acknowledged how often these emails were flying round the net with their headline, "Obama Deletes Yet Another Unread Moveon.org Email").

N: Negativity. McCain seemed negative in the debates, and his ads were overly negative. This turned off many, even his longtime friend and GOP honcho Colin Powell, who cited this negative tone as one reason he backed Obama. Plus, McCain's negativity was in such stark contrast to Obama's endless optimism.

O: Oratory. Obama's oral outpourings? Outstanding.

P: Palin. Pitifully poor pick. Pretty person. Petty prattle.

Q: Questioning assumptions. Who says a Dem can't win red states? Who says a black Dem can't win GOP voters and endorsements? Who says record dollars can't be raised via millions of small donations averaging under $100? Not he.

R: Republican Right. The GOP keeps assuming you must appease or energize the rightwing and/or religious wing and/or nutjob wing. Here's a maverick idea: why not cow tow to the needs of millions of MODERATE Republicans? Nixon used to talk about the "Silent Majority" and my guess is there is now a new generation of Silent Majority folks who are GOP but in the middle of the political spectrum. In 2008, McCain tried so hard to court the right, Obama could go full court press in the middle and win lots of GOP moderates (Colin Powell), even some conservatives (Bush's former press secretary and even the son of William Buckley). Obama, post-Hillary, moved right to win over middle ground -- and, amazingly, McCain gave it up as he slid right. Huge tactical mistake by McCain. He handicapped himself. With Republicans reeling, rife with rifts and ripped apart riffs, this seems like RIP GOP (at least for two terms). With the new powerful left, there' s not much left of the right that's right. Right?

S: Stephen Colbert. His performance at the 2006 White House Correspondents Dinner was a warning shot across the neo-Con bow that a mighty wind of change was coming. It got people thinking. And talking. And it was funny as hell. Blistering satire is one thing, but to do it right in front of all the people you are mocking, who also happen to be the most powerful people on the planet, is quite another. Yet Colbert pulls it off masterfully. The room didn't roar with laughter (for fear of firing, perhaps), but millions streaming on the Web did. I think it was an Emperor's New Clothes moment, which set the stage for millions to accept a new brand like Hope-Change-Obama. See Colbert's redhot roasting of Bush here: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-869183917758574879.

T: Texting Obama's VP pick. The text message announcing VP Biden was another brilliant stroke, not only giving mass attention to Obama's "Change" brand again (e.g., this guy is with it, tech savvy, etc), but brings in tons of funds and emails and cell numbers in order to be part of the early select millions getting the early word (which leaked big time anyway, but who cared, the point was to expand further the huge Obama network, who then kept getting constant emails and texts about Obama events, donating reminders, pleas to phone swing states, reminders to vote, chances to win things like "be backstage with Barack" -- if you donate, of course, and so on).

U: Unflappable. Obama always kept things on an even keel, especially during the debates. The people liked that.

V: Vice President Biden. First major decision for Obama, he hits a home run. Showed superior judgment to McCain, who chose a much inferior VP when it was his turn. Veep is crucial in a tight race; Barack knew it, McCain blew it.

W: Winfrey. Oprah's Obama endorsement certainly didn't hurt. Especially in the campaign's earlier days.

X: X-Factor. The late George Plimpton wrote a book on it. That certain something. Surely Obama has it.

Y. Yes We Can. The 3 most empowering words since I Love You and We Shall Overcome.

Z. Zebra. Half black and half white, like Obama, and symbolizes... ...oh, forget it. Isn't 25 reasons enough, people?

November 15, 2008

NOV 15: THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES! Benefit Bash For The Alzheimer’s Association

Featured Event Listing by Don Rose

The LA Report recommends you go to Culver City's Digital Fusion on November 15th, 2008 for a great fundraising gala benefiting the Alzheimer’s Association. Experience excellent entertainment (live music), food and drinks, an art and gift sale, and opportunities to shop for cool "Make Love Not Trash" items at special prices. Click here for details.

Saturday, November 15th, 2008, 6:30 – 10 pm, at Digital Fusion, 3525 Hayden Avenue, Culver City, California 90232. Map + Directions. NOTE: Online tickets no longer available, but tickets can be purchased at the door.

November 8, 2008



Event Report and Commentary by Don Rose

Obama? Oh mama, what a whammy of a party ye have wraught. I should have known when I saw over 4000 rsvp's online the day before (which in the end swelled to over 10,000) that this would be a madhouse. And it was. I think every Democrat in LA came to the Century Plaza Hotel. So did the Fire Marshals. I heard that, not long after the start time of 8pm, the hotel had cut off people from entering, as the downstairs ballroom area (party central) was just too full. I got in around 10:45 as the fire folks let people in a few at a time. It all went til 2am. One great party, to mark the end of eight years of the Grand Old Party.

Why did so many come out? To witness an awakening. To drink in living history live (via TV) as Barack Obama gave an electrifying and eloquent speech in embracing his victory to become our 44th President, and the 1st who wasn't a white guy. (I know, some stickler out there will say he's the first half-white guy to win, but the real impact here is about the other half of Obama, and what his dramatic landslide means for millions of Americans. Now, for the first time, every child in the land can truly believe in that age-old adage, "anyone can grow up to be President.")

Funny how, in a panoply of people, you can still gravitate towards people you know. Like Laura Nativo (pictured in photo with your intrepid reporter, yours truly). Laura is an actress and animal activist; check out her website at http://www.lauranativo.com/. The photo was snapped by another very cool Angeleno named Steven Swimmer, who is one of the main creative forces at Fox Interactive as well as being a standup comedian who does shows at The Comedy Store. I ran into many similar folks at the Obama bash, creative types who work hybrid careers, have hybrid backgrounds and drive hybrid cars.

Yes, Election Night 2008 was certainly a far cry from the uncertainty of 2000. The great thing about a landslide is that you don't go to bed with one President and wake up with another. So goodnight, President-Elect Obama. See you in the morning, as a new day dawns in America.

November 7, 2008


by Harrison Held

At Genart's Fashionably Natural event (held on October 9, 2008), Maggie Gyllenhaal and SOYJOY definitely brought this boy joy -- as did Mandy Moore the following night when she was the celebrity host of the 11th Annual Fresh Faces in Fashion, another stellar Genart event always held at the start of LA Fashion Week. Both happenings were held at the beautiful Petersen Auto Museum in Los Angeles, always a great place for A-List events.

During the October 9 event, the effervesecent, lovely and talented "Ms. G." had the honor of introducing the eco-friendly spring '09 beautiful collections of Velvet Leaf, Brigid Catiis, Popomomo and The Battalion. The show was great, the event was fun and upbeat with great music by DJ Pesce, the eats and drinks were good and there was a kind of almost wholesome, organic vibe in the air as the beautiful models walked the catwalk. And those SOYJOY bars are good -- healthy, delicious and low calorie!

"Ms. M" (photo left) was equally as lovely the next night as she introduced, for women, the dynamic fashions of LAEKEN, Maxine Dillon, Nanushka, PEONIE, Quail and WAYF -- and for men, K.Z.O. and Wayne Hadly.

Both shows were great successes. Fashionably Natural brought out celebs like Willa Holland, Vanessa Brand, tennis player Katya Decker-Sadowski, Miss USA 2007 Rachel Smith, Christine Lakin, Katie Chonacas, Andrew Roach and Krysten Ritter to name a few. On the red carpet I pondered if Ms. Ritter was a relative of the late great John Ritter; "No" I was told... and coicidentally, seated near me at the show was lovely British Vogue writer Davida Deutsch Hall who I found out used to go to school with Jason Ritter and knew John too. Small world...

Celebs attending the FFiF event on October 10 included the Pussycat Dolls' Carmit Bachar, designer Katie Rodriguez (who received a special award to kick off the evening), Carly Craig, George Blodwell, The Rad Girls, Lloyd Klein, Tony Alva, Hope Dworayck and back for a second night Katja Decker-Sadowski looking gorgeous in black with her pal Jason Wahler. Rockin' music was provided by DJ Jasepi and cute hats supplied by Goorin Bros.

It was a total surprise and a blast to see my pal model Gaston Willig up on the runway and always great running into celeb photog Byron Purvis, a very talented host, actor and voice over artist as well. Thanks to Genart for the great event, and thanks to Carl Lindstrom for the nice photos on 944.com.

Event Report courtesy of Harrison Held; see his website at HarrisonHeldStarMedia.com. Story edited by Don Rose. Special thanks to EMG PR (Evolutionary Media Group) for their assistance on these and many other excellent events.

November 4, 2008


From Steve Bass, computer expert extraordinaire: "Go into any Starbucks, tell them you voted, and they'll give you a free cup of java. Just make sure you voted, eh?" Here is the direct link to the actual Starbucks offer: http://snipurl.com/5375u

Related rumor (heard on NPR radio): patriotic doughnuts free at KRISPY KREME if you vote.

Third offer we heard of, and posted days ago: show your "I Voted" sticker at Ben and Jerry's from 5 pm to 8 pm today, get free ice cream.

The fourth yummy for your tummy: go to any of the three LA-area locations of Pitfire Pizza from 11 am to 9 pm today wearing your "I Voted" sticker and receive your choice of either a bottle of limited edition "Obama/McCain" themed Jones Soda or a bottle of Edison Ale (the ale is for ages 21 and up, available at N. Hollywood and Downtown locations only). Pitfire's 3 locations: North Hollywood (5211 Lankershim Blvd), Downtown (108 W 2nd St # 108) and Westwood (2018 Westwood Blvd).

Of course, the best reason of all to VOTE is the free satisfaction of being part of our democracy and being part of history.

GUEST ANALYSIS: Last Minute Presidential Election Summary 2008

by Doug Everett, Host of the Weekly Show "Radio Parallax" www.radioparallax.com

Tuesday's vote is expected to deliver all states carried by Kerry to Obama. At 270towin.com one can click on the '04 map as a reminder. Kerry got 252 votes – 18 short of the needed 270.

Iowa (7) - which went for Gore in '00 - is a SURE BET for Obama, leaving him just 11 votes short.

ANY combo of the following that totals 11 or more makes Obama victorious:
Ohio (20), Florida (27), Virgina (13), North Carolina (15), Indiana (11), Missouri (11), Colorado (9), New Mexico (5), Nevada (5), North Dakota (3), Montana (3).

The most recent polls in "swing" states have the following differentials (Obama up equals a + number):
Indiana – 2 to -1%
Virginia + 7 to 8%
Florida + 2 to 4%
N.C. Tied to +1%
Missouri Tied to -1%
Colo. +6 to 7%
N.M. +7 to +11%
N.D. -4 to -1%
Iowa +13 to 15%
Mont. -4 to -3%
Nevada +3 to 4%.

NM looks like a lock for Obama leaving him 6 votes short of 270. So starting with Kerry's 2004 total and adding Iowa AND NEW MEXICO leaves Obama 6 away from a victory achievable with wins in both Montana & ND or any other single state in paragraph 5 (save NV). Virgina or Colorado should do it, failing that Ohio or Florida.

Anticipated Blow-by-Blow

Polls indicate a VERY difficult task for McCain. There has been talk of swinging Pennsylvania red, but McCain is down 8-10%. PA being in play will he shockingly bad news for Obama.
This is not at all likely. If it happens I will suspect fraud.

The first polls close at 4PM (Pacific time); McCain will carry KY, GA & SC easily and will add WV soon after 4:30. Vermont will go blue. As the networks call these (~4:45?) McCain should jump to a 36-3 lead.

At 4PM polls ALSO close in Florida (except the panhandle) plus Ohio & NC. If ANY can be promptly called for Obama it is curtains for McCain.

The networks MAY be reluctant to do this, especially in FL given the fact that some western polling places will not close till 5 PST.

THE key state in this election is probably Virginia. Its 13 electors are enough to make Obama President. His lead is solid there, ~7%. If VA goes Obama, as expected, it should all be over.

Will networks make the call? Exit pollsters are reputedly on a short leash this year so exit poll results may be held back. Once polls close the initial data will make predictions easily in most cases!

Upon 5PM poll closings McCain should pick up 73 more votes from easily called Ala, Miss,TN,TX,OK & KS. This should take him to 109.

Meanwhile Obama can count on 117 votes from these strongly blue states: ME,NH,MA,CN,NJ,DE,MD,DC,PA,IL & MI. He should go to 120.

Missouri will close polling now too. It is expected to be very close, making a delay in calling it either way probable.

Review: between 5 & 6 PM one can expect a 109-120 count; with Florida, Ohio, North Carolina unlikely to be called yet. McCain cannot lose any of these 3 or he is dead. Any of these going for Obama (or Missouri) means he wins - barring entirely unexpected losses in states blue in '04.

About this time Indiana, though tight, might be called. I see it going red making a 120-120 tie as 6PM PST is passed. That is, if the networks aggressively call states.

After 5:30 PST Arkansas and North Dakota should close polling. Arkansas will go red giving McCain 126.

ND is interesting – polling is quite close. McCain needs to win it and chances are he will squeak by - giving him 129.

After 6PM we should see McCain add 30 more to his total thanks to LA,SD,NE,WY & AZ. I see him at 159 as they call these states.

Obama will add 60 to his tally via NY,RI,WI,MN and the key state of New Mexico. His total should be 180.

After 6 PM Colorado enters the mix. McCain is 7% down there. It may be called early - also tantamount to an Obama victory.

Post 7PM Iowa should dole its 7 votes to Obama, giving him 187.

Before polls even close in California at 8PM this election SHOULD be decided as an Obama win.

The networks will likely NOT declare Obama the victor until west coast polls close, however, even if he has it in the bag.

As we near 8PM Utah & Idaho will have added their votes to McCain, Montana will likely give him 3 more taking him to 171.

Alaska WILL push this tally to 174 when its polls close at 9PM.

After 8PM Obama will get 77 more votes from CA,OR, WA & Hawaii pushing him to that 264 talked about at the beginning.

After 8PM the election will hinge on those swing states.

After 8pm Nevada's polls close. Should it go blue - and EVERY other swing state not yet counted go red - a 269-269 tie would result! And given a 4% lead in NV Obama SHOULD go to a 269 vote total one vote shy of the 270 needed.

While it is very unlikely, a possibility exists that the election could be swung by one of the 2 states that DIVIDE their electors. Maine's 4 votes will surely all remain blue and Nebraska's 5 will likely stay red. But if Obama should prevail in Omaha (Warren Buffet endorsed him) its elector could go to him – giving him 270. A curious scenario.

If the election is a tie the House picks the president. This actually happened in 1800 & 1824. If it goes to the House, BTW, a Democratic victory is not certain but is very likely. A topic for another day!

After CA closes our polls it should come down to: Virginia, Ohio, Florida, North Carolina, Missouri and Colorado!

Could the election drag on all night undecided as did Bush v Gore? NOT LIKELY!
- Virginia and Colorado both give Obama leads of around 7%.
- Ohio has Obama up by around 4%
- He is up 2-4% in Florida
- Missouri & NC are toss-ups but McCain absolutely must win both.

If by 8:15 Obama is not declared a victor despite being (per my analysis) 1 vote shy, Democrats should start getting nervous.

In 2004 the LA Times had Kerry at 320 just days before the election. As it happened Bush prevailed in 5 states leaning quite blue before people went to the polls. Those states were: Florida, Ohio, Iowa, New Mexico & Colorado. Could a similar swing of 6 states occur this time? Again, not likely, the 2004 votes were tight in New Mexico, Iowa and Colorado. Evidence for election chicanery in Ohio is overwhelming, however, and strong in Florida and New Mexico. McCain running the table in these key swing states will be harder this time around. But this could be a more interesting election than a lot of people hope.

Weather addendum

In a close election weather can play a role. It is widely believed that the 1960 and 1976 elections could have gone the other way (Nixon and Ford over JFK and Carter respectively) had election day seen inclement weather. Republicans tend to vote regardless of weather conditions. Not so Democrats.

Tuesday forecast calls for wonderful weather in Missouri, Indiana and North Dakota; rain in Colorado, North Carolina and Virginia. The former should help Obama; the latter McCain. Nevada should be clear. Advantage Obama.

My handicap: NC may swing to McCain and Missouri to Obama owing to weather. The rest should not change their outcome because weather usually only makes a percent difference or so.

North Dakota is intriguing though - nice weather COULD push the state blue, which would be decisive.

November 1, 2008

NOV 1: LACMA Muse 5th Annual Costume Ball, Best Halloween Event of the Weekend!

Featured Event Listing by Don Rose

When: Saturday, November 1 2008, 8:15pm to midnight
Where: Los Angeles County Museum of Art - LACMA
5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA (323) 857-6000
Cost: $40.00

Yes, the best is back -- LACMA hosts its fifth annual Muse Costume Ball! Sure, it is technically one day past the official Halloween date, but think of it as your Day of the Dead Do and you'll be fine. The evening features live music, appetizers, and cocktails, and also included in your ticket price is a viewing of Vanity Fair Portraits: Photographs 1913-2008. The party then continues in the LACMA West Penthouse with DJ sets and the annual costume contest.

To get into the Vanity Fair vibe, come costumed as a celebrity -- living is okay, or undead if you really wanna be ghoul. Note that great prizes will be awarded to the best costumes in three categories: Best Halloween Costume, Best Art-Inspired Costume, and Most Glamorous Costume. Competition is (um) quite stiff (rigorous? riger-mortus?) every year, with everyone always wearing their best costumeable duds.

Costumes may change every year, but one thing always remains the same: the creativity is high, the crowd is intelligent and fun, and the conversation is scintillating. Okay, that's more than one thing. But heck, who's counting. Just know that we at The LA Report guarantee you will have a great time. In fact, LACMA's Costume Ball is one of our Top Ten Events of the year. Just go!

And remember: as you go home from LACMA or head to an afterparty, remember to FALL BACK; we need to set our CLOCKS BACK ONE HOUR at 2am on Sunday morning Nov 2.