Last July, just after ERSNew.com starting posting on the web, the story of Los Angele’s Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa having an “affair” with local Telemundo anchorwoman Mirthala Salinas splashed onto the internet first, followed by the traditional mainstream news media, jumping on the bandwagon. ERS was right there with them. Our stories and coverage of the scandal put our fledgling web news site on the media map. Nearly overnight we went from ERS who?, to being a primary media source for major media outlets from Los Angeles to London.
For over three months we investigated, reported and sometimes even went looking for the Mayor’s girlfriend Mirthala Salinas. We never found her, although we came close many times. Considering ERS is a two man operation in the field and only part time at that, we did a lot better than news organizations with a lot more people and a lot more resources. Ultimately Mirthala Salinas, the once rising star in Spanish language TV News in Los Angeles lost her job. She and the Mayor also split shortly thereafter. She later got a job in Spanish radio after the furor over the entire scandal died down.
As the radio broadcaster Paul Harvey would say, now the “rest of the story”
During the entire Mirthala and the Mayor or “Summer of Love” as the scandal became known, Ms. Salinas was living only a few blocks from where I was lived in Studio City, CA. I own a home there. She owned a condo. We even did a story on her purchasing the condo from one of the Mayor’s supporters, a key figure in a political PR and lobby firm. Even the owner of the local corner market where we both shopped on occasion told me Mirthala regularly showed up to shop there. I never saw her, never happened to run into her. All that changed a few Saturdays ago.
Many months ago I moved from Studio City, back to the more native confines of Orange County — back behind the “Orange Curtain” as Los Angelenos like to say. Since then I’ve been trying to rent my house in Studio City. So far no luck, but prospects are looking up. Over the past few months I’ve been holding open houses on Saturday’s to show the house to prospective renters. This past Saturday I had an unexpected visitor who was looking for new place to live. Her name was Mirthala Salinas.
That particular Saturday morning I waited for the many callers who had made “appointments” to see the house. They came and they went, some loved the house, others just came and went. Then I opened the door and there she was. Mirthala, the woman I had been seeking to talk with for so many months. I had tried her on the phone before, but she never called me back. She was there with her new husband, a man named “Yani” who I also recognized.
They had no idea who I was. They came in and I showed them around the house, giving them the “tour” I’ve now perfected over the many weekends. Mirthala was very cordial and friendly. She was quite shy and very polite. She asked me about the house and I showed her around. Her new husband “Yani” seemed interested; he asked me if I was possibly interested in selling the house or doing an option to buy it. He explained that they lived in a condo nearby and how hard it was to get a loan to buy a house. When they were ready to go Mirthala asked me a few questions more about the house and took down my number in her cell phone to get back to me if they were interested. I haven’t heard from them since.
Nonetheless, if Mirthala and Yani read this, nothing personal, it’s just my work as a reporter I’m sure you’ll understand. Nonetheless, either way the house is still for rent and I am interested in selling if you want to talk. If not, it was nice finally meeting you and good luck with your new marriage.
Mirthala, give me a call you’ve now got my cell phone number, don’t be shy, I’d still like to interview you for ERSNews about that whole dating the Mayor thing last summer!