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Matt Weinstock

July 15, 2007 |  6:18 pm

Matt_weinstockd July 15, 1957

Farther and farther go the freeways, preceded by roaring monsters which sweep aside or reduce to rubble everything in their paths, then claw and shape the earth. But all is not lost.

Every Tuesday, Lenard Kester takes his art class sketching. For this month's subject, he selected the quickly disappearing old houses in the path of the new San Diego (Sepulveda) Freeway south of Santa Monica Boulevard.

The first week all was serene as his pupils, mostly housewives, worked at their easels.

Last Tuesday, the second session, Lenard noticed that a group of neat little cottages with orderly gardens several blocks south of their location had been pushed into huge piles of unrecognizable rubble. Meanwhile, a chugging bulldozer half a block from where they were painting gave portent of evil things to come.

Clearly, the houses and backgrounds his students had half-finished would be gone before this week's session.

But during the afternoon the contractor on the freeway job came by to see what they were doing. He ventured the opinion that one pupil's painting looked like a Van Gogh.

Upshot was that he gave orders that the section was not to be disturbed until the paintings were completed.

I DIDN'T REALIZE it until John Grover, the gourmet, told me, but L.A. has long been a tripeless desert.

But you know how gourmets are--sneaky. So John, a tripe lover from way back, has wheedled Rocco Guarino, cook at Anthony's across from City Hall, into putting tripe on the menu one day each week.

"This is definitely a cultural breakthrough," gloats John.

Me, I can't tell the difference between trip and octopus.

AT RANDOM--A man about to board an elevator in a Spring Street building asked Ann, the operator, "Is this the champagne flight?"

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