Today marks the last day for NPR’s “Day to Day,” the L.A.-area daily news magazine hosted by Madeleine Brand. Kevin Roderick at LAObserved commends Brand and the “Day to Day” staff for “putting on a darn good daily radio hour these past five-plus years” and James Rainey at the LAT, writing a farewell tribute to the show, pulls something of a Didion (or a Nathanael West) and in the process pens a love note to the West:

Faux-Westerners tend to give themselves away. They drive with their convertible tops down on frigid winter days. They write lyrically about night air filled with the pungent smell of (scentless) bougainvillea. And, when times get tough, they revert to their Eastern roots.

National Public Radio feels like a slightly tone-deaf interloper this week, as it kills its engaging, Culver City-based magazine, “Day to Day,” and hacks its West Coast staff. This all comes just six years after the network proclaimed a deep new commitment to life on our distant shores.

I’m a big fan of NPR and its top-drawer political and cultural coverage. I don’t think the bosses are making these cuts lightly. But it’s probably hard to realize, from the banks of the Potomac, just how much many of us out here in the provinces will miss host Madeleine Brand and the rest of the “Day to Day” crew.

Discussing the show’s careful attention to the war in Iraq and to climate change, Rainey writes, “It had a way of delivering both the news you needed and the features you came to understand you wanted.” High praise.

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Jane Kim is a writer in New York.