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Category Archives: Notebook on Cities and Culture

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E47: Waking Up in the Unknown with Jim Benning

Colin Marshall sits down in Santa Monica with Jim Benning, travel writer and co-founder of World Hum, home of “The Best Travel Stories on the Internet.” They discuss why Mexican food on other continents sucks so bad; the nature of a “weather lifestyle” site he previously edited; the old question of travel versus tourism; his […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E45: A State Apart with Jon Christensen

Colin Marshall sits down at UCLA with Jon Christensen, editor of Boom: A Journal of California, the recently re-launched magazine from the University of California Press. They discuss the meaning, if any, of the phrase “he lives in California” in an author bio; whether California’s east-west divide bleaches out its much discussed north-south one; why we […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E44: Fertile Dystopia with Matt Novak

Colin Marshall sits down in Culver City with Matt Novak, author of Paleofuture, a blog that looks into the future that never was. They discuss what goes through is mind when he sees LAX’s Theme Building; why 1960s visions of jetpacks and flying cars have kept their hold on the American imagination; whether we only remember […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E43: Baby with an iPad with Jason Boog

Colin Marshall sits down in Santa Monica with Jason Boog, former publishing editor a Mediabistro and author of Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age. They discuss what freaks us out about the idea of a baby with an iPad; his project’s venerable predecessor The Read-Aloud Handbook; the importance of the very act of reading aloud, […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E42: The New Guy with Eric Nakamura

Colin Marshall sits down in Sawtelle (also known as Los Angeles’ “Little Osaka”) with Eric Nakamura, founder of Asian-American aesthetic culture and lifestyle brand Giant Robot. They discuss the differences between the Sawtelle he grew up in and the Sawtelle he finds himself in today; how and where he got his doses of Japanese pop […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E41: Born Worn Down with Geoff Dyer

Colin Marshall sits down in Venice with Geoff Dyer, author of books all across the spectrum between fiction and non-fiction on such subjects as jazz, photography, travel, World War I, and Andrei Tarkovsky’s film Stalker. His newest book Another Great Day at Sea follows his two weeks aboard the aircraft carrier the U.S.S. George H.W. Bush, and his first […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E40: Eyes on the Streets with Damien Newton

Colin Marshall sits down in Mar Vista with Streetsblog Los Angeles founder Damien Newton (and his young daughter). They discuss what Los Angeles transportation culture looked like from a distance before he came here (nonexistent); how he found himself covering the city’s “turning point”; the advantages to getting around from just where chose to make […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E39: The LAleph with Edward Soja

Colin Marshall sits down in Mar Vista with Edward Soja, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Urban Planning at UCLA and author of such books as Postmodern Geographies: The Reassertion of Space in Critical Social Theory, Thirdspace: Journeys to Los Angeles and Other Real-and-Imagined Places, and now the new My Los Angeles: From Urban Restructuring to Regional Urbanization. They discuss downtown’s Bonaventure […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E38: East- and West-Coastification with Madeleine Brand

Colin Marshall sits down under the cafeteria at Santa Monica College with beloved Los Angeles radio personality Madeleine Brand, now host of Press Play on KCRW, formerly of NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Day to Day, KPCC’s The Madeleine Brand Show, and KCET’s SoCal Connected. They discuss how much easier she has it waking up for noon radio nowadays […]

Notebook on Cities and Culture S4E37: Closed Worlds with Mark Edward Harris

Colin Marshall sits down in Los Angeles’ Miracle Mile district with photographer Mark Edward Harris, author of such books as Inside North Korea, Inside Iran, The Art of the Japanese Bath, and Faces of the Twentieth Century. They discuss filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami’s introduction to his Iran book, and his rule about always excluding people from his own photographs; the importance […]