Shortly after the Anti-Christ ascended at the LA Times (dooming that paper into the hell fires of everlasting perdition), LAT architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne blows the doors off the dying paper with an amazing critique of Frank Gehry, star architects, contemporary urban development and an array of related issues.
In fact, there are at least twenty different subjects that Hawthorne masterfully touches upon in this article, elegantly tying them all together into one insighful package. And there is not one snarky remark, no interjection of himself, no cheap shots, no political correctness - and no grandstanding.
Furthermore, working without a net, he even delves into arcane local political/cultural matters ... and comes out unscathed! Plus, as a final, unexpected, bonus - he also gets everything not just right - but devastatingly right!
Finally - and you'll love this - he even - very gently - corrects one of the many errors in the recent Editorial Page story on Frank Gehry! Errors, of course which, the LA Times will never admit to.
So how does this jibe with my oft-staked viewpoint that the biggest downfall of the LA Times is its wholesale importation of out-of-town talent and its ignoring of LA born and bred writers who actually know the territory?
Well, there are times when it works - and this is one of them.
The difference is that Hawthorne - unique among recent LAT imports, is willing to delve into the community, do his homework and then engage the city head-on. So even though he got most everything wrong in his recent SCI-Arc (and the name of the school was still written incorrectly on the website last time I looked) article, he was still willing to tackle the controversy in a way that no other LA Times writer would ever do.
But this time, he gets it all right.
So read the article - and not just once. There's a lot to savor and a lot to think about.