From 1998 to 2003, I was a contributing writer covering various local oddities for The Los Angeles Times.  Here’s a selection of those articles.

Secret Handshake Central
Pageantry Abounds at the Masonic Museum
December 07, 2003

Mourning Becomes Elective
“Mourning Glory: Fashion’s Untimely Demise,” at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising
November 23, 2003

A Chamber of Secrets
Hollywood’s Masonic temple, witness to the passage of time, is restored and reborn as an entertainment venue.
May 2, 2002

We’ve Only Just Begun to Appreciate the Carpenters
The Carpenters Exhibit, at The Carpenter Center, Long Beach
November 03, 2002

Antiquity’s Gnostic Church Is Enjoying a Renaissance
Interview with Bishop Stephan Hoeller of Ecclesia Gnostica.
October 06, 2002

A Fantasy Getaway Right in Town
Travel dreams, cabin kitsch and shoe shopping–themed bars, restaurants offer a little escapism.
September 05, 2002

The Automated Andy Warhol Is Reprogrammed
A robotic doppelganger Andy Warhol intended as his stage persona awaits rebirth in a Chatsworth effects studio.
May 16 2002

It’s a Puppet Show, Yes, but It’s Definitely Not for Kids
A program celebrates an ancient art form in very unusual–and adult–ways.
February 21, 2002

Tinker Bell’s Fairy Godmother
Model Margaret Kerry helped breathe life into the cartoon pixie.
February 19, 2002

When Good Deeds Multiply
Phil Parlett’s Museum of Scouting
February 03, 2002

One Gladiator’s Dolce Vita
Zanna’s latest Spartacus adventure, a self-produced video reality show titled “Spartacus on the Roads of America.”
November 18, 2001

Preserve All Monsters!
Bob Burns Has Never Met a Mutant He Didn’t Like
September 23, 2001

Hare Rama, Diorama!
A hidden Bhagavad-gita Museum in Los Angeles
July 08, 2001

No More Flicks on Route 66?
Foothill drive-in is the relic of a cultural phenomenon. Despite efforts to save it, the final credits are rolling.
July 09, 2001

A Movieland Ghost Town Beckons in Santa Clarita
Gene Autry’s Melody Ranch
June 03, 2001

Cruising the Bright Lights of the Big City
Museum of Neon Art Neon Cruises
May 31, 2001

Rough ‘n’ Radiant
Los Angeles’ Museum of Neon Art, which celebrates an art form both decorous and derided, is marking its 20th anniversary with a show on neon’s unusual history.
May 31, 2001

Parallel Universe
Miles of Railroad Track and a World in Microcosm
April 29, 2001

The Paths of Greatness
Stepping out in the Southland often means stepping on the names of those who have cemented their legendary status, from actors to surfers.
April 02, 2000

Tiny Wonders on the Big Screen
The first film by the small but expanding Museum of Jurassic Technology pays tribute to the art of miniaturists.
March 11, 2001

It’s No Secret: Local Shriners Welcome the Spotlight of Oscar Night
For some, it’s just the site of the Academy Awards, but for those in the know, it’s The Al Malaikah Shrine Temple of the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine.
March 25, 2001

How Tiki Makers Got Their Groove Back
Since 1956, partners in Oceanic Arts have been suppliers to the world of all things Polynesian.
August 20, 2000

Santeria Central
Indio Products keeps the candles burning for those searching for a little magic, luck, or even some spiritual guidance.
August 15, 2000

Vaudeville Vixens
Strippers–young and older–return year to the Exotic World Museum and Burlesque Hall of Fame to compete for the Miss Exotic World title.
June 11, 2000

Hungry for Love
Since time immemorial, various foods have been purported to stoke the fires of love. Some of the choices–beans, anyone?–may surprise you.
February 09, 2000

Lone Ranger Keepsakes Ride the E-Frontier
A mask, costume and other memorabilia of the ’50s television hero are up for bidding on the Internet.
October 25, 2000

Following Postal Rules to the Letter
Sure, you can mail your true love a partridge for her pear tree–as long as it’s sent by express mail in a biologically secure container.
December 17, 2000

Going, Going, Gone Bananas
What started as a silly joke involving Chiquita stickers grew into a museum with a-peel in Altadena. Now its proprietor has put the fruits of his labors up for auction on EBay.
December 29, 1999

Want Fries With That Close Encounter?
“People don’t want to sit around eating their pastrami sandwiches looking at an abduction scene,” says the ship’s creator, whose craft has been parked outside Tom’s No. 25 since December.
July 06, 1999

He’s Uncle to the Ants
It’s all plastic and All-American. Uncle Milton’s Ant Farm hit the toy market in 1956, when Milton Levine…
December 13, 1998

A High-Spirit Pursuit
Richard Senate, Ghost Hunter
October 25, 1998