Thursday, March 30, 2006

Paul Levine, The Deep Blue Alibi

From Paul Levine's The Deep Blue Alibi, page 151:

"In the space of seven minutes, Judge Alvin Schwartz--eighty-one years old, nearsighted, absentminded and cantankerous as a hemorrhoid--threatened Steve with contempt, ordered him to put his pants back on, reserved ruling on his motion for summary judgment, tossed all lawyers out of his chambers, but commanded Ms. Tami Stepford and all her silicone charms to remain behind, while His Honor considered the weighty legal precedents concerning injuries suffered while wrestling bikini-clad women in vats of Jell-O.

On the way out of the courthouse, Steve felt elated. Victoria had made the legal arguments, and he'd handled the single-leg takedown and crotch-and-a-half pinning move. Surely Victoria must realize they were a terrific team."

Friday, March 17, 2006

Non-fiction: Los Angeles car chases

From The New Yorker, Jan 23-30, 2006, Tad Friend on L.A.'s love affair with televised car chases:

"The classic pursuits are diverse in their astonishments. There was the Samoan who led the California Highway Patrol on a two-hour chases in a blue pickup, weaving through traffic the wrong way with two tires blown and the rims shooting a comet trail of sparks. There was the guy who stole a 7 UP truck and started running red lights in the Valley, smashing into cars and rounding corners with cases of soda flying out and geysering across the road; he eventually drove into a cinder-block wall, ran, and climbed a tree, then fell out of it. And there was the motorcyclist on Ventura Boulevard who was suddenly swarmed by six pedestrians with their arms extended, 'Night of the Living Dead" style; he eluded them by doing a figure eight, then raced free through traffic--and T-boned a Mercedes at the next intersection.

To achieve classic status, however, you must adhere to certain rules. You must have long, stringy hair. You must keep going even when any scrap for escape is gone...And if you have eluded your pursuers with masterly driving for a goodly period you must then pull into a fast-food joint to be overpowered. Last April, for instance, a man in a glittery purple cape provoked the police into chasing him by slaloming down the 405 at more a hundred miles an hour, sometimes steering with his feet. After nimbly avoiding spike strips to deflate his tires, he suddenly pulled into a Donut World in Dana Point. Given home-field advantage, the cops got him there with bean bags and pepper spray."