Friday, December 26, 2008

White Christmas In L.A. 2008

View of Downtown Los Angeles with a snow capped Mt. Baldy in the background a day after Christmas. 
Even saw the world's largest airliner, a Qantas Airbus A380 on final approach to LAX, fly over head in the clear blue skies. What a sight they must have had. 
Only got called a paparazzi once today, so it was a good day.
Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas In Eagle Rock

Most interesting graffiti I've seen in a long time. 
Candy caned LADWP work site on Eagle Rock Blvd.
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

Photo by Ted Soqui c 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008

Retired For '09

My boots, now retired. 
These boots have seen me through thick and thin, mainly thick. Purchased them over 10 years ago from can't remember where, somewhere fancy I think, they are made by Tommy Hilfiger. Probably, definitely the toughest boots I've ever owned. Easily out lasted my previous two pair of Timberlands. 
This year finally did them in, the fires of Southern California melted the soles off of them twice. They caught fire once this year as well while standing on super heated coals that used to be someone's home. Borrowed some duct tape from a Channel 4 news crew on the fire lines near Santa Barbara to hold them together. 
Wore these boots in the flooded streets of New Orleans Lower Ninth ward. Wore them through countless wildfires. Wore them for every major disaster I covered over the last ten years, and there's been many. These boots have served me very well, and if they could be properly buried they would. 
Don't know what quite to do with them now that they are retired. Think it would be sad and disrespectful to throw them out in with the garbage, but keeping them in my already crowded closet makes even less sense. 
Just replaced them with some fancy black hi-tech boots made by "RG", with carbon rubber soles and a steel shanked sole. 
They were suggested to me by KFWB's radio reporter Pete Demetriou. He swears by them, had a pair in his rig he showed me, says they will "last forever." We will see, they make a moon boot clomping sound when I walk in them and have a zipper on the side of them to quickly get them on and off with. Feel like a commando while wearing them, not happy about that.
Haven't properly broken the new boots in yet, but I'm sure there will be plenty of "events" to test them with. 
Tommy H's boots, A+.
God bless my old boots, I will miss wearing them.

Photo by Ted Soqui c 2008

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Fading Hope

Barack Obama "Hope" posters under the 2 Freeway underpass at Colorado Blvd today.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Brewer Out

The Los Angeles school board voted to end David Brewer's position as Superintendent today. The politically motivated vote was 5-2, with board members Julie Korenstein and Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte as the dissenting votes.  The board decided to lead the school district in another direction according to the board president, Monica Garcia. Brewer has fallen out of favor with Mayor Villaraigosa, Ex-Mayor/Millionaire Riordan, and Billionaire Eli Broad. Their decision to out Brewer won't cost them one $, and will leave the City of Los Angeles to pay Brewer an annual salary of $300,000, $45,000 a year for his expenses and a $3,ooo a month housing allowance. Brewer is entitled to 18 months of severance or about $500,000. It's all about the children, just not the children of Los Angeles.

Photos by Ted Soqui

Monday, December 8, 2008

LA Weekly Celebrates 30 Years

The LA Weekly held it's 30th year anniversary party last Saturday night at the new Grammy Museum at L.A. Live. The event was successfully catered by Wolfgang Puck. Wolfgang's famous pizza was served along with roasted turkey, a mashed potato bar, and an amazing cupcake dessert bar. Many old LA Weekly alumni were in attendance along with the current employees. The Grammy Museum was open to the party, showing off the new huge interactive touch screen displays with music, hand written sheet music, costumes, and musical instruments. A must see for any music lover. The L.A. Live Nokia Plaza was also opened to the public and featured a 50 foot tall electronic Christmas Tree.

Photos By Ted Soqui

Monday, December 1, 2008

Frowning/Sad Sky

There was a rare planetary conjunction over the skies of LA this evening. Jupiter and Venus along with earth's moon formed a frown face, I thought it looked more like a sad face, in the southwestern sky. This celestial event was once seen over Bethlehem on June 17 in the year 2 AD according to astronomers. The next event won't be seen until the year 2013.

Photo by Ted Soqui


The latest gas prices in the LA Area. Garo Gas and Fastop on Washington Blvd. in Pasadena duel it out to be the lowest. Each station will out do the other by a penny, which will translate to huge sales over the other station. The gas stations are located next to each other.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

MySpace Trial Ends

The MySpace suicide trail ended today with three guilty verdicts against Lori Drew, the 49 year old Missouri woman who created a fake MySpace account to torment 13 year old Megan Meier who ended up killing herself. Lori Drew was not convicted on the more serious felony charges of using a computer to intentionally inflict emotional distress on Megan Meier. Megan's mother Tina Meier spoke to the media at a press conference after the trial. She told the media she wished for guilty verdicts on all four felonies against Drew, but called the three convictions "a victory." She also said "this is not about vengeance," "this is about justice for Megan."
Click here for my LA Weekly slideshow.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Photographer Nick Ut Loves The Rain

World famous AP photographer, Nick Ut, loves the rain. While waiting outside the US Federal Courthouse in the rain for the verdict in the Myspace suicide case to come in, Nick was the only media person to smile and embrace the heavy rain fall. He was truly happy about it.

Photo by Ted Soqui c 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Santa Barbara Fire Started By Teen Bonfire

The LA Times is reporting that the Montecito "Tea Fire" was started by ten teen agers, on top of a hill and abandoned Montecito party spot called the "Tea House", trying to keep warm then leaving the bonfire they set to burn out. The fire's embers continued to burn for 12 hours, then were carried by the notorious "sundowner" winds of Santa Barbara. The fire destroyed over 250 luxury homes and injured 25 people. The Santa Barbara D.A.'s office has not charged the teens yet. The teens are local students from an unidentified school. Westmont College, a Christian College, is down the street from where the fire began. The teens have been reported to be cooperative and did not intend to start the fire according to the LA Times and Santa Barbara D.A.'s office.

Photo by Ted Soqui c 2008

Oakridge Residents Return To See Their Homes

Several Oakridge Park Mobile Home residents came back to the mobile home park to retrieve property from their homes. Many sifted through the ashes for hours finding small momentos, jewelry, cups and dishes, and photos. Most of their belonging burned up in the quick moving blaze. Many residents said they would not move back into the park.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Yorba Linda "Freeway Complex Fire"

Views from the "Freeway Complex Fire" in the city of Yorba Linda, birthplace of Richard M. Nixon.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Oakridge Mobile Home Park Fire Aftermath

A small community of mobile homes in the Sylmar area of Los Angeles was completely destroyed by wild fire. Over 500 domiciles were leveled by the quick moving "Sayre Fire." The mobile home park was closed off to media later in the day as police officials have labeled the area a possible crime scene. Cadaver dogs and search and rescue team are expected to enter the park on Sunday and search the park for human remains and possible arson.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Friday, November 14, 2008

Montecito Fire 11-14-2008

Day 2 of the Tea fire in Montecito. My boots and pants caught fire briefly, made for an eventful morning, thank God for duct tape. Most of the wind is gone and the fire is mainly out. LA is expected to have Santa Ana wind conditions over the next couple of days.
Click here to see the a LA Weekly slide show of my photos.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Montecito Fire 11-13-2008

Photos from the Santa Barbara/Montecito fire.
Click here to see a LA Weekly slide show of my photos.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Hundreds March To Repeal Prop 8

Hundreds of Gay and strait citizens took to the streets and marched around the Mormon Temple in West LA to repeal prop 8, the California ballot measure that would ban same-sex marriage. The Mormon church, who are against same-sex marriage provided up to 15 million dollars to promote the ballot measure which was passed by California voters yesterday. Protesters are calling for the Mormon church's 501(c)(3) status to be overturned do the political advocating of the ballot measure. This is the second day of protesting.
Here's the slideshow on the LA Weekly site.

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

LA Celebrates Obama Presidential Win

Thousands of LA area residents filled the main ballroom of the Century City Hyatt Regency Hotel to watch large TV screens of Barack Obama winning his bid for US president 
LA, yes we did!

Photos by Ted Soqui c 2008