Monday, August 29, 2016

Local Women’s Club Debuts New Eyesore At Weekly Sunday Night Blowout

By Ingomar Schoenborn, Quilt Staff

The Canoga Park First Wednesday of the Month Women’s Club officially unveiled a new billboard-sized sign advertising its nightclub venue this past Sunday, as part of its popular “F.U.C.K. the Neighborhood” series of events the club premises hosts.
The Women's Club's new sign, unveiled during last night's typical Sunday night blowout, solicits those
willing to stage similar events and ensure Canoga Park's future of ongoing pandemonium. Staff photo.
The large wooden sign was actually installed at the beginning of the summer, but the Club wanted “just the right event” to mark its official debut. Last night’s raucous free-for-all — with music so loud it simultaneously set off three separate car alarms in the club’s parking lot — seemed a perfect fit.

“We needed a new sign since the one in front of the building is as rickety and old as most of our few remaining members,” laughs Bessie Betelmeyer, 92, Official Club Chronicler of Those Darling ‘Consumer Cellular’ Commercials.
Bessie Betelmeyer, left, and Mildred "Millie" Kordas at a Women's Club event in 1997. File photo.
Indeed, the old sign, installed “Oh, God knows when,” according to 87-year-old Mildred Kordas, Secretary in Charge of Calling Now For Information On How A Reverse Mortgage Could Benefit You, has seen better days. Oft-replaced plexiglass protects the club’s logo from would-be vandals, since the sign is a popular and frequent target of local taggers. 

“It’s hard to keep on top of that, since so many of [the taggers] are themselves guests at the events that are held here,” Kordas says.
The Women's Club's venerably creaky, dry-rotting "old" sign. Photo courtesy DAИK Enterprises, LLC.
As of this writing, however, the new billboard, located on the south side of the building, is currently pristine and completely free from local gang tags or other vandalism.

That handsome new sign serves another purpose, too: Its front lawn forebear is arguably misleading as it still identifies the ramshackle building on the corner of Jordan and Valerio primarily as a women’s charitable organization, despite the widely-held view that the popular nightclub venue merely holds just enough quaint “old-lady” type functions to maintain a tenuous hold on its tax-exempt status.  The new sign acts as an oversized, highly visible mission statement of sorts, helping to educate the public more accurately about the institution's current purpose. 

Doreen Farber.
Photo: Fred Farber
But perhaps, just by being erected, the billboard has already served its most important duty: as a token means for the club to spend a meager sum from its coffers.

“I’m required to use a certain amount of the rental fees we bring in and reinvest it on maintenance, upkeep and improvements. So naturally, I pushed for a sign made from a cheap sheet of plywood,” says Club President In Charge of Neighborhood Cacophony Doreen Farber, known as much for her wonderfully dismissive manner as she is for her delightful incompetence in managing a tiny organization with a dwindling membership.

“The other members wanted better security or sound-proofing," she says, shaking her head in annoyance. "Shit, I green-light either of those things and Fred and I won’t be able to afford to go to Kauai again this fall.”

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

News In Brief — August 24, 2016

A brief, up-to-the-moment news 'round-up' of news in and around Canoga Park and surrounding areas that surround Canoga Park.
•   •   •   •   •

Tuesday September 6th Is Picture Day
LAUSD faculty working in Canoga Park’s Early Education Center are encouraging parents of newborns, toddlers and other pre-school girls to get their daughters’ ears pierced now to give them plenty of time to heal properly in time for Picture Day on Tuesday September 6. Additionally, local tattoo parlors are reminding middle school boys as well as high school girls who have been putting off getting their back-to-school ink to come on in with their tattoo vouchers: Whether they’re looking to get the simple and classic three-dot design by the eye or on the hand — or even an elaborate tramp stamp — there’s still time to get the work done and have the scabbing clear up so that new tat looks its best in time for yearbook photos.
•   •   •   •   •

New Sign At Corner Shopping Center Sets Neighborhood Abuzz
A new sign advertising the businesses on the northeast corner of Saticoy and Topanga, in Canoga Park's bustling Satipanga shopping district, has been put up, or erected, at the edge of the lot to the delight of drivers and pedestrians alike. The stately marquee, designed by Canoga Park's own Peppy Sign's & Banner's features the signature "free apostrophe" the company is well-known for. "We do offer a complimentary punctuation mark for every 50 characters purchased," says Peppy Sign's owner Jim Powell. "We decided to give it to Taco's Reyes, because frankly, we really like their taco's."

•   •   •   •   •  
Canoga Park Family Eschews Funeral, Memorializes Son On Back Of New SUV Instead
A local family who lost their son to the exciting and fast-paced sport of illegal street racing chose to use the decedent's life and car insurance payouts to purchase a new Ford Expedition rather than stage a traditional funeral, and then honor his memory by creating a tribute to him in Brush Script text decals on the vehicle's back windshield. Frankie "Capusta" Murcek was racing against friends along Topanga Canyon Boulevard in the early hours of July 18 when he lost control of his vehicle and careened into a telephone pole, totaling both his 2009 Nissan GT-R and his skull. In a related story, the extensive text on the back windshield may have prevented his mother, Euna Murcek, from being able to see the oncoming truck that killed her as she backed out onto Ventura Boulevard while trying to evade an insurance fraud investigator.

•   •   •   •   •  

Local Brewery Celebrates First Anniversary
8one8 Brewing, a local, small-batch beer manufacturing concern, or nano-brewery, celebrated its first anniversary on August 18. Specializing in exquisite craft beers, crafted exquisitely and available on-tap at a selection of local bars, pubs, taverns and Moose-centric lodges, 8one8 has the distinction, at one year of age, of being the second oldest brewery in Canoga Park (with the mantle of oldest brewery being held by local restaurant El Taco Zarigueya, whose vat of rancid horchata has been fermenting since 1991). Both local beer aficionados and local beer aficionados can help support the fledgling brewery by visiting a participating bar and magnanimously ordering a round of 8one8's delicious libations for everyone in the place, or, alternatively, purchasing a Founders Club Membership.
•   •   •   •   •

Some Canoga Park Residents 'Extremely Concerned' Over Opening Of Proposed New McDonald's
A new McDonald's restaurant being built on the former site of Coco's Restaurant & Bakery at 22200 Sherman Way at Farralone Avenue, in Canoga Park's trendy Shermalone restaurant district has some residents very upset. "The sign says 'Coming Soon' but when is soon?" complained Nita Avenue resident Merl Zygmont, representing a coalition of anxious McDonald's customers-to-be at a recent emergency meeting of the Canoga Park Friendly Neighborhood Council. "I mean, we got these coupons in the mail and they expire on the 28th. And McDonald's hardly ever sends out coupons. We're extremely concerned about this situation. Just what are we supposed to do?!" Update: A spokesman for the McDonald's Corporation, when reached for comment, said that the coupons are valid at any participating McDonald's restaurant.

•   •   •   •   •  

Canoga Park Library Unveils Latest Free Bookmarks
The Canoga Park Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library has unveiled its latest selection of bookmarks which are available free to the public. Bookmarks — generally thin, horizontally-formatted strips of card stock featuring colorful designs, clever slogans to encourage reading or helpful information — are used as place holders when inserted between pages where a reader has temporarily stopped reading a collection of bound and printed leaves, or "book," and are available to those borrowing such materials from the library. "Please come in and take some," says Help Desk volunteer Bob Harland. "With fewer and fewer people actually reading these days and taking out books, these things have kind of taken over my work space."

•   •   •   •   •

Restaurant That Sounds Vaguely Like A 1950s Science Fiction Movie Opens In Winnetka
Film-loving gastronomes have been lining up at the The Crab Planet on the Winnetka / Canoga Park border as much for the tasty food as for its cinematic name, which some have noted is reminiscent of the golden age of schlocky monster movies. “Yeah, we thought maybe it’d be like that crazy thai place on Sherman Way in North Hollywood that has all the neon signs and kitschy decor but with, like, vintage 50s monster movie posters and maybe showing classic sci-fi ‘B’ movies instead,” says bearded Canoga Park resident and podcaster Brian Rauschebart. “Turns out it’s not like that at all — it’s actually quite tastefully decorated inside — and the food was really excellent. But they should totally have a night each week where they screen ‘Attack of the Crab Monsters.’ It could totally become like a thing.” The popular new restaurant specializes in tasty cajun / seafood / thai food and is located at 7140 Desoto Avenue. As of press time, it was unknown whether or not they bought any supplies at a nearby restaurant supply warehouse that sounds vaguely like a place on Futurama, "Restaurant Planet."

•   •   •   •   •  
Briefly now: Do you have briefly breaking Canoga Park news?  Wrap it up reeeal nice and send it to us here so we can use it in our next wad of news briefs. By the way, 8one8 Brewing, Crab Planet, Restaurant Planet, McDonald's, and every single place at Saticoy & Topanga are all great local businesses that you should be supporting. So what in God's name are you doing still reading this? G'wan, get out of here! Go support 'em! Go support 'em before we call the cops!

Monday, August 8, 2016

Canoga Please! Those Diabetic Test Strip Signs! Also, Quick & Easy Summer Recipes!

Canoga Please! Every time I’m forced to slow down at an intersection here in Canoga Park because some jackass blows through a stop sign before I get a chance to, I have time to roll my eyes upward in annoyance — and every single time they come to rest on a telephone pole-mounted sign with an offer to buy ‘diabetic test strips!’ Who the hell has diabetic test strips to sell? Are Canoga Park residents overwhelmingly diabetic? If so, how come they have spare test strips? Why aren’t they using them? What’s going on here?  —Mabel K., sent from my phone while flying across Owensmouth at Valerio

Dear Mabel,
‘What’s going on’ here is the entrepreneurial spirit that made America — and Canoga Park! — great! Many of those who suffer from diabetes receive free testing supplies thanks to Medicare and Medicaid. But who has time to check their blood sugar levels when you’ve got to get to the local donuteria before they run out of bear claws? Therefore, our local diabetics end up with a surplus of testing supplies taking up valuable space at home — space that could be better used for storing stacks of butterscotch pudding cups from the dollar store. 
Companies like those who have invested in local telephone pole advertising space offer cold hard cash for the supplies and then sell them to people who actually are managing their diabetes but who have to pay for their supplies — yet can’t afford even the cost of the co-pays. Thanks to a bustling free market and exciting private programs like these, Canoga Park diabetics are no longer ‘victims’ as they’ve been characterized for so long in the past and are now taking control of their disease and earning extra money by making diabetes work for them! The day has come for these now-productive members of society to stand up and be counted! (Those who still have legs, anyway.)

*  *  *  *  *
Canoga Please! 'Cold hard cash,' hmm? Can you suggest a recipe for a really decadent, rich dessert? Oh, let's say a delicious, sweet, gooey poundcake...and, eh, also — tell me how I can sign up for Obamacare! —Mabel K., sent from my phone, now at Valerio and Variel, and gaining speed

Dear Mabel,
Sure!  Take one pound sugar, one pound butter, one pound flou—  ...Now wait a minute...!   —Burton Cantara

Do you have a question about Canoga Park? Email it to us at and it may be answered here. Questions may be edited for brevity or to accommodate photos we've been looking for an excuse to run. Sorry, due to the volume of mail we receive, we cannot respond to every inquiry.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Canoga Park Teen Injured While Playing Pokémon Go

By Michale Hemmingway, Quilt staff


A local teenager was injured today while playing Pokémon Go, the popular smart cellular telephone, or smart phone application, or app, that has taken the nation — and Canoga Park — by storm.

Radek Murta, 19, of Blythe Street, was on the curb along Strathern Street at Alabama Avenue, in Canoga Park's tight-knit Strathabama neighborhood, searching for the virtual reality characters when he spotted “Rattata” on his screen, and approached the creature to "capture" it.

Radek Murta mere seconds before being injured while playing Pokémon Go along Strathern Street.
Curiously, he had the foresight to, for whatever reason, take a picture of himself playing the popular
game, evidently using a completely different device to take said picture. Photo credit: Radek Murta.
“So, I’m gettin’ close to it but I don’t know how to, f_ckeen, do it right, so I can’t catch it...? So I squat down an reach out an’ that’s when the motherf_cker bit me. They don’t tell you they bite, you know? F_ckeen drew blood an‘ everything. I’m-a sue those motherf_ckers at EA Games, yo!"

Pokémon Go was developed by Niantic. 

Murta, an unemployed 19-year-old entrepreneur admits that the popular game isn’t really his forté which currently runs more towards providing complimentary, unsolicited “security checkups” for those who park cars around Lanark Recreation Center, but is playing to collect characters for his brother, Jarik.

“Fuckeen...he in the hospital, like, recuperating an' shit...?” Murta says, while using a length of toilet paper to re-bandage his bloody, pus-oozing finger. “So I’m collecting the little animals an’ shit for him 'til he gets better.”

Jarik Murta, 11, an avid Pokémon Go player, was struck down by a bus on Topanga Canyon Boulevard recently after wandering into the street trying to catch "Jigglypuff."

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Fancy-Schmancy West Hills Wins Exclusive Distribution Rights to West Nile Virus

By Hillary Royer, Quilt staff. 


A sign attached to a telephone pole on Covello Street near Asman Avenue, in West Hills’ fragrant Asmello neighborhood, confirms the presence of West Nile virus-carrying mosquitoes in the area — and residents there couldn’t be prouder. 

West Nile's Not Just A River In
 West Egypt:  
The sign proclaiming
the disease's presence in West Hills.
“We fought hard for the privilege of being the first community in the area to have West Nile virus, and it’s paid off,” beamed West Hills Exclusive Neighborhood Council president Bob Rawlins at a recent press conference / frou-frou outdoor champagne brunch. “West Hills is, as always, the trend-setter for the San Fernando Valley.”

Through a dedicated program of over-watering lawns so they're at their greenest, keeping decorative bird baths filled to capacity, and making sure the fish in backyard koi ponds are well-fed so they’re not tempted to eat mosquito larva, tony West Hills has managed to lure the West Nile virus-carrying mosquito to the area and allow it to get a foothold before it spreads out to neighboring communities.

“We do have exclusive distribution rights to these mosquitoes — eh, that is, until such time that they multiply and fly out to other places. But let it be known: We had them first. West Hills: First with West Nile, ha ha!” Rawlins chuckles as he slaps at an insect on his arm. “Little bugger. Oh man, this headache’s only getting worse. I think I need to sit down.”

Pierce College Winnetka professor of epidemiology Dr. Morris Detzer was stunned to hear the news “West Hills? Really? With all the discarded tires full of standing water and broken toilets on the curb along Valerio in Canoga Park? With the all but stagnant LA River in Canoga Park?! West Hills! Huh, I’ll be damned.”

The Bet's 'Off!' Beloved public figures Bob Blumenfield and Mitchell
Englander,  both well-known for their public service & senses of humor.
Photos: Bob —; Mitch — Ssaporito/Wikipedia.
LA City Council member Bob Blumenfield, whose district includes Canoga Park, reportedly took the news in stride despite losing a bet. “He had a friendly wager with [West Hills’ LA City Council representative] Mitch Englander,” laughs an aide to the councilman. “I can confirm that he has paid in full and we have delivered one can of Off! to Mr. Englander’s office with our best wishes.”

West Hills dress shop owner Gretchen Biery in the
West Hills dress shop she owns.   Photo: G. Biery
West Hills business owner and resident Gretchen Biery is thrilled by the news but not surprised. “I’m delighted. The rest of the Valley looks to West Hills for guidance and leadership in these matters. It makes sense we should get West Nile first. My father who grew up here was stationed in the South Pacific during World War II. Did you know he was the first one in his platoon to get malaria? Apparently mosquitoes know good breeding when they see it.

“We’re on track to be first with the Zika virus, too. My neighbor’s housekeeper’s from El Salvador and she’s going back there to see family next month,” Biery says as she smacks a pest on the side of her neck. “So there’s a good chance she’ll bring it back with her. Technically, the woman lives in Canoga Park, but she works here in West Hills, so if she starts showing symptoms, they’re going to put a cot in the laundry room for her so she can stay there until we get a confirmed diagnosis. We'll have our fingers crossed! else feeling dizzy?”

Friday, July 1, 2016

Canoga Park Braces For ‘Mother of All’ Noisy Weekends

By Ingomar Schoenborn, Quilt Staff

DATELINE: THE LA RIVER RIVERBED (or just the LA Riverbed, right? Where's that damn style-guide?)

Experts Advise Residents To Prepare For ‘Unprecedented’ High Decibel Levels, Sustained Clamor.

THOSE in Canoga Park for the long Independence Day weekend will experience (or, in many cases, contribute to) a wall of noise from a variety of sources that’s expected to run continuously from early afternoon Friday and not end until some point late Monday evening; and will be perhaps loudest in the area around the Los Angeles River, according to predictions.

While Canoga Park has always been a boisterous area — indeed, it came in at number one on’s Annual List of Noisiest Places to Live — holidays, particularly the Fourth of July, are known as an especially rowdy time of year here in the West Valley, and this year’s holiday weekend should be one for the record books, say experts.

Weekend Noise Forecast Map. Image courtesy
Canoga Park Office of Uproar Encouragement
“We recommend earplugs, a white noise machine, humming loudly, or all three at once [to combat the noise] for those who are allergic to loud, sustained sound,” says Chuck Kritchman of Canoga Park’s Office of Uproar Encouragement. “We anticipate this to be the mother of all weekends, volume-wise. It should be glorious. I can’t wait to hear about it when I get back from San Diego on Tuesday.”

“It’s the Fourth of July, so you’ve got the illegal fireworks, which have already been intermittent since, what, Memorial Day,” says Dr. Morris Detzer, head of the Urban Anthroacoustics Department at Pierce College Winnetka. “But there’s many other unique factors at play here too making it really the ‘perfect storm’ of noise, the likes of which we’ve never seen before.”
Dr. Morris Detzer
Photo: Mimi Detzer

“If the holiday fell on a Saturday , it would be pretty damn loud,”  continues Detzer, “Even on a Sunday, it would be an incredibly noisy couple of days, but the volume would reach its apex by the end of the two-day weekend.  However, with the Fourth on a Monday, we’ll be experiencing a crescendo of noise, turmoil and chaos that already started in some areas on Thursday night but will not achieve its loudest point until late Monday evening. It’s going to be something indeed. I’ll be in Big Bear.”

Detzer points to the unseasonably warm weather as a factor in ‘upping’ the din factor. “If it were blazing hot, you’d have folks staying inside more, with their air conditioners on.  But as it is, it’ll only be really hot, so you’ll have people outside, into the wee hours of the morning, carrying on loudly.” Factor in excessive holiday weekend drinking and how cranky and argumentative people get when it’s too hot, and the noise is magnified exponentially, the professor of sonic pandemonium notes.

The area’s usual disorderliness, vandalism and crime (with the ensuing police helicopters & sirens), out-of-control house parties and the West Valley’s increasingly popular sport of illegal street racing will add to the bedlam. Barking dogs, too, will be a factor. “We’ve always got the barking dogs,” notes Detzer, “but with the fireworks, this will exacerbate that situation.”

Doreen Farber. Photo: Fred Farber.
Doreen Farber, president in charge of neighborhood cacophony of the Canoga Park First-Wednesday-of-the-Month Women’s Club, notes that her organization’s headquarters, long known as the area’s hottest, anything-goes nightclub, will be going full-tilt all weekend long.  “Booked solid,” she beams while riffling a stack of one hundred dollar bills. “We already got the cash, and Fred and I are leaving for a bed & breakfast in Santa Barbara for the weekend, so [the renters] can do whatever the hell they want there — we won’t be around to hear it! Fred, get in the car!”

Large groups of raucous mobs congregating in public parks will likewise increase the overall decibel level throughout Canoga Park, though Barbara Walczek, Reservation Coordinator at Lanark Park notes that she has not seen an appreciable uptick in the number of applications for permits legally required by those wanting to host parties or inflate bounce houses there this weekend. “To be honest, no one ever bothers getting [the permits], and we never check, so that really wouldn’t be a good indicator anyway,” says Walczek. “And even if they did want to get one, it’s too late now because I’m leaving for San Luis Obispo in five minutes.”
Lanark Park, the recreation center so sublime they made it rhyme, will be Canoga Park's
#1 destination this holiday weekend for bounce houses, barbecues and brawling. File photo.
Canoga Park residents without triple-pane windows or who must venture out into the chaotic uproar are recommended to stay away from such noise 'hot spots' as the aforementioned Lanark Park, where dueling sound systems and arguments over who gets to set up their rows of white, rickety folding chairs where are expected to result in loud, angry free-for-alls throughout the next three days; the LA River basin, whose concrete lining makes for unparalleled acoustics and enormous sonic amplification — and is therefore a magnet for those with firecrackers, fireworks and explosive noisemakers — and “anywhere at all on Valerio Avenue east of Canoga Blvd,” suggests Captain Reed Malloy, Cyber Support Bureau Officer of Noise Ignorement.

The LA River in Canoga Park is a popular place for illegal fireworks due to its acoustic properties
as well as the fact there's nothing to burn, unless her polluted waters were to catch fire. Staff photo.
“Really, for those who have to stay here in town this weekend,” suggests Capt. Malloy as he climbs into his RV in the parking lot behind LAPD's Topanga Station to head to Sequoia for four days of camping, ”the best and safest way to celebrate and enjoy Independence Day in Canoga Park is to assume the fetal position, stick your fingers in your ears and rock back and forth in a corner of your home.”

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Local Women's Club Gears Up For Fun & Games With Bingo Night

By Ingomar Schoenborn, Quilt staff.


THE CANOGA PARK First-Wednesday-of-the-Month Women’s Club is putting on a bingo night, and the community is invited — for a night of bingo.

“We operate primarily as a nightclub now,” mentions Flossie Brown, Vice Chairwoman In Charge Of Collecting Loose Buttons In An Old Ribbon Candy Tin. “However, we’re required to run a few quaint old-lady events throughout the year to maintain our certification as a non-profit women’s club from the National Federation of Obsolete Organizations.  

Bingo daubers will
be available for sale.
“So there’s this, and we also roll bandages for the war effor— What’s that, Myrtle? We won?!  When?

“...Oh, okay, so there’s just this now.”

The event will run Friday evening from 6 to 9 pm. There’ll be tacos, too.

“If there’s a food that goes better with geriatric women — using one hand to steady a series of flimsy bingo cards printed on newsprint spread out in front of them while dotting them with an oversized marker in the other — than crunchy, fall-apart tacos whose contents spill out all over the place unless they’re held upright, we haven’t heard of it!” smiles Brown.

The event should be quite a change of pace for the community surrounding the club’s headquarters as merry calls of “Bingo!” will likely replace the usual overloud sound system pounding out a seismically thumping bass felt for blocks. 

Club President Doreen Farber.
Photo courtesy Fred Farber.
“We’re used to more boisterous events on the weekends around here,” says Ted Pasternak, a neighbor to the club. “You know — lively music, car doors slamming all night long, partygoers swearing and arguing, kids running around screaming, cars peeling out and people smoking pot. And that’s just in the parking lot,” says Ted Pasternak. “Boy, they do have fun, don’t they?”

“Oh, that asshole,” says Club President in Charge of Neighborhood Cacophony Doreen Farber. “Well, I’m so sorry to disappoint — there’ll be none of that Friday night. Saturday night, definitely. Sunday night — probably. But none of that Friday night!

“Well, almost none of that. Helen Dobrucky gets medical marijuana for her glaucoma.”