Archive | February, 2010

Coming to America?

22 Feb

So for the last three months, I have been without any fascinating posts or marauding adventures of grime and destruction. It’s just a simple case of writer’s block. Yes, bloggers have writer’s block too! Right now, I’m thinking of the future, and it’s been nearly crystal clear for the past few weeks now.

In case you haven’t gotten much of the hints on my Facebook or I haven’t told you details as I’m passing by, I will more than likely move back to the United States in early June, right after I turn in papers for my classes. So my plans for living in Clapham and getting a shot at working for The Guardian or The Times are now over. The reason I say more than likely is because, like journalism, things can change in an instant.

Why am I moving back to the United States? First of all, as a foreign resident and not a citizen of the European Union, it would be harder for me find and secure a job under the immigration rules. Even if I decided to take the one-year program for graduating students and live here, jobs in my field will need to be advertised to British and EU citizens before non-EU citizens can take the chance. Second, the opportunities as a journalist in the United States has seemed to improve somewhat, as I’ve been looking
at almost every day and there’s opportunities abound in many corners of the USA.

However, I’m putting my bets on the internship path. So far, I’ve applied for internships in Seattle, Las Vegas, Washington, D.C., and with a company that has newspapers in many cities throughout the United States, including two in Southern California. Basically, anywhere in the continental United States (with notable exceptions) are fair game.

While I will have to put my plans of living abroad on hold, I have no regrets moving to London and studying in this journalism course. It has been quite a life-changing experience for me so far, as I have learned about self-sufficiency, cultural differences, and to avoid using the word “soccer” at all times, especially in front of Everton fans. I’m looking forward to the next few months of challenges, opportunities, and visiting as many places in Europe as I can.

Sorry For My Absence

7 Feb

I’d love to explain my absence from the blogosphere, but it would take a long time for me to tell you. It would probably have been wise to blog about Los Angeles, as I was there for a couple of weeks, but most of the time was just spent at home. In short, I just needed time to relax.

Honestly, I’ve been focused on getting as many internship applications as possible, and it looks like I may go back to the United States this summer.

Floods hit San Pedro neighbourhood

1 Feb

Torrential rains hit parts of San Pedro Tuesday, causing noticeable damage and forcing residents and firefighters to pull people to safety.

According to local reports, about 16 residents were evacuated from their homes and some streets were closed in the affected area.

On the intersection of 4th Street and Grand Avenue, mud covered the streets as residents tried to wash the pavements with gardening hoses. Residents were still shocked about the rare extreme rainfall that befell this neighbourhood.

Ruth Campbell, who lived near the intersection, was trying to escape from the rain in her car when she the oncoming floods swept her car away.

Campbell said: “The water was up to my neck. The door wouldn’t open and the current took my car away.”

It took three men to rescue her from the submerged vehicle as the water rushed from a nearby hill and was holding onto a fence in order to stay alive.

Across the street from Campbell, Maria Ochoa, 38, was also unfortunate in trying to drive away from the storm as her car was caught in the flooding.

She said: “My waist was in water and by the time I got to the corner, the water went to my ribs. I opened the door to get out and my car was completely flooded.”

While people were trying to driving away from the storm, others were stuck in a torrential mess, like resident Santa Renteria.

Renteria, 68, was still cleaning up the mess from her home, which the rains had damaged most of the electrical equipment in her house, including her electric scooter.

She said: “My home, my TV is full of water. My refrigerator, my rooms are flooded.”

In addition to Renteria, she said her next door neighbour had a foot of water in his house.

Local news going iPhone bound

1 Feb

The local newspaper will soon make its way into iPhone applications as they find new ways to reach their audience in light of falling circulation.

Newspapers such as Kent on Sunday and the Manchester Evening News have launched applications in the past few months with thousands of users downloading them.

Ben Edwards, the marketing manager for Kent on Sunday iPhone app developer PageSuite Ltd., said that he was pleased with the positive response surrounding the app despite the fact that the newspaper did little marketing prior to launch.

He added that the app would give local customers two different ways to read the news and would tap into the commuter demographic who use iPhones too keep them updated with the news as they head to work.

Edwards said: “It’s perfect for [readers] when they commute into London.”

Not only do these iPhone apps give readers the news, but also search for jobs, property and cars, which Edwards said would benefit both readers and advertisers alike.

He said: “This is great for customers on the go, giving local readers another channel to find exactly what they want. It is great for advertisers too, as their jobs, cars and houses are available to anyone with the app – which ultimately increases sales.”

While Edwards envisioned a future for more iPhone apps, Gavin Merriman, head of product development for Guardian Media Group’s Regional & Manchester Evening News Media, stated his pleasure of the response from the Evening News’s iPhone app.

Merriman said: “We’ve had over 10,000 downloads in the first 3 months with users typically viewing 3 articles per day.”

He said that the iPhone app was “a very welcome addition” to the list of the Evening News’s other networks.

Merriman said: “[It’s] giving our readers even more choice.”