With a résumé that includes newspapers in Philadelphia, San Jose and Oakland, journalist Steve Lopez had street cred well before Robert Downey Jr. portrayed a liberties-taken version of him onscreen. Since May 2001, the Los Angeles Times columnist has long demonstrated a knack for unearthing stories far off the beaten paths of greater Los Angeles. He is best known, however, for his discovery of, and evolving friendship with, a schizophrenic homeless man and gifted musician named Nathaniel Anthony Ayers, whose story Lopez chronicled in a series of columns before recounting it in his book, The Soloist. "Now a major motion picture," as they say, the book is also Kansas City's 2009 selection for the metrowide United We Read initiative. Steve Lopez delivers a free presentation this morning at 9:30 in the Carlsen Center's Polsky Theatre at Johnson County Community College (12345 College Boulevard in Overland Park), in conjunction with JCCC's Scholar-in-Residence program.
Thu., Nov. 5, 9:30 a.m., 2009