Exploding Bomb in Encino Mailbox.


     Photograph article dated March 9, 1961 "Exploding mailboxes in an exclusive Encino residential neighborhood are arousing a vigilante-type reaction in some homeowners. The latest victim, Frank A. Fuller of 4495 Libbit Ave., whose mailbox was blown from its curbside mounting Friday by some kind of explosive, said: “I own this place, I pay taxes…

Sunday Errands


Yesterday, Sunday, there were no evident calamities around us. Tragedy took a day off. The air was clear from fire smoke, some blue showed in the sky, and we went for an air-cooled drive around our San Fernando Valley behind tinted windows and masked faces. We passed Woodley Park, once a bird sanctuary, now just…

Last Night I Left My Smart Phone at Home. And it was Glorious.


Last night, I did something quite daring.  I left my smart phone at home, intentionally, and it was frightfully glorious to go out, un-tethered.  I felt guilty, as if I were doing something quite illicit, not certain if I were violating the law, or taking advantage of my own autonomy by robbing tech companies, influencers,…

More Postcard Observations


  The Joseph Schlitz Brewery on Roscoe in Van Nuys was an especially popular destination in the 1950s through the 70s. The adjoining Busch Gardens, with its array of exotic birds and lush waterfalls, was another fantasy environment of natural artifice, like Disneyland or Knotts Berry Farm, a fake beloved world for visitors to Southern…

Death Ends Police Chase: August 24, 1959.


From the LAPL files: "Robert Lee Daily, aka John M. Savage, aka George R. Gibb, was being sought in connection with over 60 burglaries in the Hollywood and Beverly Hills areas. He was shot dead by Investigator James McGrath when Daily tried to flee from McGrath in Encino. Detectives carry body of Robert Lee Daily,…

Modernity and Kitsch.


I recently came across these 50-year-old photographs by Allan Grant that were published in the November 23, 1962 Life Magazine. They show a brand new supermarket, Piggly Wiggly,that had recently opened at 15821 Ventura Blvd. in Encino. The structure is now gone, replaced by a long, white office building. What surprised me most was seeing the…