Reporter Joseph Serna took a different approach to reporting on a fateful dare in Koreatown earlier today:
'Twas the nightmare before Christmas, for one man in K-Town.
He got stuck in a chimney Friday, about 30 feet down.
He climbed in the passageway because of a dare.
His only hope of rescue: that L.A firefighters would be there.
For four long, cramped hours, his friends tried to save him.
But as sunrise approached, his chances looked slim.
Firefighters were called; the chimney was just 18 inches wide.
They looked through the top, the bottom — thought of cutting open the side.
In the end, the 20-year-old was freed. He managed to shimmy out.
But there’s vandalism to the chimney that cops are citing him about.
The pals were drinking and daring, Sgt. Raul Pedroza said.
They were doing “silly things,” not using their heads.
Serna recounted the process that led to a bit of journalistic poetry:
I was reading out loud what a possible lead could be, thinking of playing off the idea of a man stuck in a chimney so Christmas coming early, or just the idea of not following through on a dare.
Then Kimi [one of our editors] said what this kid when through was “a nightmare before Christmas.”
When I wrote “It was the nightmare before Christmas,” in my head I reflexively began reciting the Twas the Night Before Christmas poem. So I went with it!
For the full story, making up for its lack of rhyme with solid reporting, head over to L.A. Now.
Koreatown’s bond to Herb Wesson is breaking amid redistricting: As L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson works to push his district farther into Koreatown, leaders in the community are fighting back.
With growing political, organizing and fundraising clout, an array of Koreatown leaders have been trying to move their neighborhood out of Wesson’s district and into a neighboring one, as part of the once-in-a-decade process of redistricting. Wesson is pushing in the opposite direction, favoring a map that would send his district deeper into Koreatown.
What began as a campaign of aspiration and hope centered on improving the chances of electing an Asian American lawmaker has turned into a bitter clash over Wesson’s leadership — one that threatens to cast a shadow over his recent ascension to council president.
Photo: William Min, left, joins dozens of angry people at an L.A. City Council meeting this month to speak about redistricting. Many Koreatown leaders want the new council maps to leave their neighborhood out of Herb Wesson’s District 10. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times
Hotel Normandie in L.A.’s Koreatown to get $5-million makeover: The inn’s new owner plans to turn the 1928 building with a checkered past into a 100-room boutique hotel for travelers who want to stay in the middle of town.
Photo: Hotel Normandie is a squat brick structure built in 1928 at Normandie Avenue and Sixth Street in L.A.’s Koreatown. Credit: Arkasha Stevenson / Los Angeles Times
Koreatown eats: Specialty restaurants to explore beyond Korean barbecue.
Photo: A hot pot at On Dal 2 comes loaded with crab. Credit: Ringo H.W. Chiu / For The Times
On this day, 24 years ago, the Los Angeles Times published a story about a rally in Koreatown. Around 700 Korean Americans gathered to support South Korean students, who were demonstrating for democratic reforms in their country.
The original photo was published June 22, 1987, with the caption:
Crowd holds signs in Korean and English at Los Angeles rally to press for democracy in South Korea and support student protesters.
Our Vintage Times series is presented on Tumblr with photography from the Los Angeles Times archives.