Friday, December 29, 2006

The Year in MilesThink

Why not? Every other blogger worth their salt (whatever that means) is doing it, so here goes, here's a look back at some of my favorite posts:

January 1: Namaste And, let's start the new new year off with that as well, why don't we?

February: A view of Los Angeles from Griffth Park after a big storm. Is any other major city more beautiful then L.A. when it's scrubbed clean? I think not.

February: Cooper, brought home from Ireland, tries to play with our older dog Sabrina. Hilarity and agression ensue.

March 22: The beginning of the 4th year of the Iraq war. We didn't know why we were there in March (or any time before) and we certainly don't know why now, tonight, as we learn of Hussein's hanging.

March 25: Si se puede. The political/socio-economic world begins to shift and it starts with 500,000 people marching through Los Angeles.

April 17: Mass Transit in L.A. then and now. With the expo line beginning, the eastside line extending, plans for a line down Wilshire to the beach, and traffic worsening every day, mass transit is back in our life and we'll all be better for it.

May 1: Mas de "si se puede" (photo from L.A. Times)

May 22: Lancelot Link. Sadly, I believed that the full episodes and mini doc were going to be released on DVD. Instead, some illegitimate company back east released them, incomplete and at low quality, and refused to stop selling them even as ABC (part owners of the show) sent them a cease & desist. ABC doesn't seem interested in pursuing legal action and that's where it stands. It's sad.

May 27: Kevin deLeon. He was campaigning door to door and he accidentally (I assume) left my front gate open and my dog got out. Well, I got annoyed and got up on my electronic soap box and the result was that he went ahead and became our next Assemblyman regardless of my blog and I received more comments than any other post ever. I hope he's a better Assemblyman than gate closer.

June 9: Tranny Special

June 12: Gay Pride

June 13: Who said, "L.A. is a harsh mistress, but she's my lady."

June 27: Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica at Sunset.

July 2: Why a national sales tax is patently unfair. It still is.

July 7: Habibi's Falafel? Middle eastern food in Atwater Village? As if...

August 5: Grape Stomping is not for amateurs. Watch it again.

August 15: New York Subway story.

September 10: Canele. Boy, did I get alot of comments. I loved it then and I love it now. And I guess I'm not alone. So there.

September 13: Best Interview Ever. James Brown. R.I.P.

September 28: The future L.A. subway map. Still gives me chills.

October 4: A death in Atwater Village.

October 31: Halloween in Atwater Village.

November 28: Best Burger in Los Angeles and the McGriddle: A love story.

December 6: Taco Truck Lady: A love story.

December 10: Nana Sandra. 8 days before she died. Rest in Peace.

Well, there you have it. The good, the bad, the amusing, the sad. You take them all and there you have the facts of life. The facts of life.

Best wishes for a happy, healthy and more peaceful new year. Lord knows, the whole planet could use it. Namaste.

Sadam Hussein to be Executed This Weekend

So, it has been leaked by the Bush administration. I think Josh Marshall has the best take on it that I've seen thus far:

"This whole endeavor, from the very start, has been about taking tawdry, cheap acts and dressing them up in a papier-mache grandeur -- phony victory celebrations, ersatz democratization, reconstruction headed up by toadies, con artists and grifters. And this is no different. Hanging Saddam is easy. It's a job, for once, that these folks can actually see through to completion. So this execution, ironically and pathetically, becomes a stand-in for the failures, incompetence and general betrayal of country on every other front that President Bush has brought us. "

Read the whole thing.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Meta Blogging

I don't know if this counts, but one of my favorite neighborhood blogs has blog rolled me -- Atwater Newbie -- and I couldn't be more delighted. Since I do tend to be all over the place -- from family issues to political issues to Canele -- I'm thrilled at the recognition. I've never met Mr. or Mrs. Newbie, but I'm honored by their recognition and encourage you to visit them for the latest and greatest about our little neck of the woods.

Post Christmas Decorations


DSC00184
Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Decorations after Christmas and after a particularly windy night always seem a smidge depressing. Here Santa's taken a header from a strong Northeasterly wind.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Jennifer Hudson and Dreamgirls

OhmyGod. Jennifer Hudson gives the best performance of 2006 in the best movie of the year. And Eddie Murphy is spectacular. Jennifer's performance, though, could be considered to rival Barbra Streisand's performance in FUNNY GIRL all those many years ago. Seriously, she is a star. Go see it if you haven't. Go see it again if you've seen it. And get the soundtrack. It's that damn good.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Los Angeles Police Broken

So much for the "broken windows" policy. While I live in Atwater Village and the neighborhood has definitely improved over the years, in general it is ignored by the city's police department (among other departments).

On the block I live on, all street lights have been out for a week. No note from DWP or the city and a call to Eric Garcetti's office turned up a response in two days saying that they were aware of it and working on it.

Anyway, tonight, some yahoo was setting off personal fireworks to celebrate Jesus' birth (I guess) for at least half an hour around midnight. After 20 minutes, I called the local police dept. (northeast div) and they transferred me to 911 where I've been on hold for 20 minutes.

WTF?!

What if these illegal fireworks set my house on fire?

Really? WTF?

Our street has been without streetlights for a week, this was inevitable?

Where are the police?

Where is the city?

Why does it not matter?

Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Iraq Quagmire

Many of the left saw it for what it was, but most were left unheard. Billmon -- thankfully back again after a brief absence -- revisits his telling archives. This post may be the most depression one I've ever read. Read it.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

A Little More About My Nana

This is some of what I plan to say tomorrow at her funeral...

What can I say about my Grandmother. I’ll start with her name. Nana. Nana Red Hair. We didn’t call her Nana Sandra. We couldn’t. Well, I couldn’t. For some reason, it came down to me. The first grandchild. I was not able to call her what my mom tells me she wanted to be called at first: Grandmama. Not only that, I couldn’t even pronounce Sandra. I just couldn’t say Sandra. So, the result, well, should be obvious. I called her Nana Red Hair. Then, we all did. And, though strong willed – more strong willed than anyone I know – she relented.

Anyhow, I’ll only speak briefly. Her first name wasn’t even Sandra. I can’t remember what it was, but it was a normal sounding name that a character in a novel or movie also had and she simply didn’t like it. So, she changed it. And no one could argue against the change. Have I mentioned that she was strong willed?

I’ll bookend this by jumping ahead decades. Well into her 90s, with me having moved back from Boston and living in L.A., she would somehow convince me to drive her everywhere. I mean everywhere…in a day. Pick her up in Westlake Village, pick up some relative somewhere in the San Fernando Valley , drive to Boyle Heights to visit her parents and aunts and uncles and cousins at the old Jewish cemetery. Then, it was off to Canter’s for a nosh – on her, of course – and then reverse the course, back to the Valley, back to Westlake Village and back home. I could have had a livery license, but I did it. She made me do it. And I loved it.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Nana Sandra

Rest in Peace. 97 years old and a couple months, she died tonight around 7. She had a good long life filled with love and tsoris. She always meant well, in my estimation, and she offered nothing but love to myself and my sister. At a time when my father and I really hadn't spoken in 20 odd years, she made us get on the phone. She knew. She was a force.

I've had too many people die in my life and Nana Sandra is the very latest. As I said before, I shouldn't be so sad for somebody who had lived 97 years, but I am. Maybe it's that the last little bit was so hard. Is that really necessary? Shouldn't the last little bit be the easiest?

I don't know for sure if there's something after life, but I hope that there is. And there, I hope she meets up with her husband and her parents and brothers and sisters and Manuela and my friends and Michael and Poppy and Denise and her friends and all that is not good here is good there. That is my hope.

God speed, Nana. I love you.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

I Got a Shave Today

I admit it's becoming addictive. I think I've done it now once a week for the past month or so...and off and on for the last year. I go to Tony's Barber Shop in Silver Lake, next to the Ralphs, CVS (formerly Sav On), Starbucks, Astro mess.

Tony's has a barber pole outside, real barber chairs, black and white linouleum tile, lots of newspapers and magazines and national geographics. He plays whatever sports is on TV or Mexican music. I like the Mexican music.

All of the barbers are latino and most of them don't really speak too much English. Tony does and welcomes all. As I've sat waiting -- no reservations, of course -- I've seen everyone from gang bangers to elderly immigrants to gay men sit down, read the paper and get a haircut.

Most don't seem to go for a shave and only a couple of the barbers can even do it. But the wait is worth it. They sit you down, drape you in a yellow drop cloth, tuck a towel into your collar and tilt you back. Way back. Close your eyes and relax, you're gonna be here for a spell.

First comes the foam. They vigorously spread it across your face and massage. It feels good. Real good. Up next, the hot wet towel is layed across your face. Depending on the barber, this will either be a simple washcloth layed out over the foam and beard and patted or an elegantly maneuvered hot wet towel that covers your entire face but considerately leaves a breathing hole for your nose. It's more traditional and more enjoyable to get the latter.

After the towel, they can either apply some sort of moisturize-hot towel regimen again or go straight back for the foam and the long blade. Once the scraping begins, you've really put your face in the hands of your barber. They scrape, and pull and tug and scrape more. They push and lift and squeeze and shape. And when you think they're done, they go through it all again. And it feels great. Really great.

If you're lucky, they'll then apply another hot towel followed by, if you're not so lucky, some after shave. Oh, and does it sting? Yes, it stings. Strangely, though, once the after shave's applied and the barber takes the towel that was tucked into your collar and fans your face, all is well. You've been shaved.

How much does it cost? $12 plus tip. Well worth the indulgence. Try a shave at Tony's!

Tony's Barber Shop
2552 Glendale BlvdLos Angeles, CA 90039
(323) 663-9589

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Nana Sandra

Sandra is my grandmother. We always called her "Nana with the Red Hair" because when I was a toddler, "Sandra" was too hard to pronounce.

Anyway, she's 97 years old and is going through a hell of a time the last month or so. She's lived in southern california since about 1915 -- her family general store and farm had one of the first phones and gas stations in the valley -- and she has now lived long enough so that modern medicine can keep her alive beyond the point where she would have presumably died 20, even 10 years ago.

She can't really speak. She can't control her body. But there is a chance all this can come back to her.

I've faced more deaths than I care to admit at this point in my life. This inevitable one is no easier. Actually, when it does happen, probably harder. I don't know why. I should feel sadder for people I've loved who have died young, right? 97 years old is a good a long life, right?

I think what's getting me right now is the current situation: hospitalized, unable to really communicate, in pain: it's not fair. She shouldn't have to go this way. It's not fair.

But, it's a part of life.

John Hughes of West Newton, MA

Rest in Peace.

Father of our dear friends, Mary,Carole and John, husband of Margaret, Grandfather to many, John will be missed.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Parenting

If you think you've had a tough month, take a glimpse of Sarah's life. Oy. And I thought it was terrible picking up five bags of dog crap. Not so much.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

L.A. Taco Truck Lady - An L.A. Love Story

I live on the eastside -- though that's debatable these days -- and work in Beverly Hills. Yeah, the commute's a gas. Anyway, one of the nice things about where I work -- and this is true about most office buildings all over the city -- is that we're on a regular route of a taco truck.

And, oh sweet jesus, I do love our taco truck and our taco truck lady. She and her meals on wheels are in front of my very building every day -- rain or shine -- at 9:30a and 1p. Every day.

The food is voluminous and quite tasty. The breakfast burrito, though, is legendary. A brief description, if you will: A large flour tortilla overstuffed with at least 3 eggs, a heaping amount of cheddar cheese, a slab of hash browns, a large thick slice of ham, bacon and sausage. Oh, and the bacon and sausage are actually wrapped in the ham. Yes, I said wrapped. It's like a meat wrap inside a Burrito wrap. Crikey!

Here's how you eat it. You take two small bites off the top and then just before every subsequent bite, you fork in a little of her homemade salsa. Honestly, this one meal could end world hunger. I have at it at 9:45 and I swear to God, as my witness, I can't even consider eating until 4ish.

I have started to vary it a tad, though. It's actually too much. Sometimes no hash browns and ham. Sometimes no cheese. Today, though, I found the perfect combination: No ham and an extra piece of bacon. It filled me and, yet, I could actually have a small salad around 2:30.

Anyhow, this whole post really is about the truck lady. I don't know her name, but I love her. I think she's Korean and the ladies who work inside the truck cooking are latino. What's really amazing, though, is that she speaks Spanish more fluently than English.

God, I love that and I love L.A. for that. So, here's to you Korean Spanish-speaking Taco Truck Lady! You're the best and your breakfast burritos are unparalleled!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Clown Jokes Make Me Giggle

Especially when they're in legit obituaries, God help me.

A little song, a little dance.
A little seltzer in your pants.

Gets me every time.

(Of course, my friends and family know I prefer lines about seeing curtains in the window and just having to have them, but that's a story for a different day.)

Monday, December 04, 2006

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Best Burger in L.A. and McGriddle Sandwiches

Ok, the McGriddle first. I don't eat at McDonalds often...anymore. When I was a kid, it had to be at least once a week that I found myself hovered over a large fries and a couple cheeseburgers -- I always hated the quarter pounder and the big mac, because the onions were too big. That's a different story. Anyway, so I had to take my Mini -- which I love -- to the dealer this weekend for its annual (that's right, annual. suck on that!) oil change and a couple other things. The dealer is on Lankershim by Universal City, but nowhere near anything really to eat...except McDonalds.

So, starving, I went. I waited in line. At the last moment, I called an audible and ordered a McGriddle with eggs, bacon and cheese. And sweet Jesus, it was good. Really freakin' good. Sweet and savory all in delicious juicy warm bites. Whoever invented it, deserves the Nobel Prize.

Now, on to burgers. For months, I've heard about 25 Degrees, the new burger restaurant at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood that was created by the team behind Aubergine and a million other things. Saturday night I went with my friend Philip and -- you guessed it -- sweet Jesus, it was good. Really actually great. I got the burger with goat cheese, bacon and -- this is key -- garlic parmesan something. And I ordered the burger medium rare. It came medium rare. Meat juice oozed with every bite, but not so much onto the plate; instead, rather, into the super absorbant sponge-like, light n fluffy bun.

All the flavors combined and shed light on a beauty I have never witnessed before. I will be back. Oh, and the onion rings, french fries and dipping sauces were all superb.

One final incongruous note: why are there no hot dog buns in the northeast? Man, that always steamed me. You order a hot dog in Boston and you get it on a folded piece of falling apart white bread. Sheesh.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

Though we have daily, weekly, monthly, annual, perenial troubles, we persevere mostly and for that I'm thankful. I'm thankful for Carl, my family and friends, our dogs, our lives, our new congress, our little neighborhood in an exciting city and the chance to make a difference, hopefully, every one in a little while. I hope that the people in the world with less to be thankful about -- Iraq, Sudan and on and on -- will someday also have more to be thankful for.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Why We Read Blogs

What started off as an interesting comment by LACityNerd on the UCLA student being tasered repeatedly turned into an even more interesting comment on why people read blogs? Why do I read the blogs I read? I read them because they have unique voices and perspectives I either agree with or find interesting. I'm not so interested in Blogger Toddler's next pick as I am in where the folks at Franklin Avenue walk or eat and what they think about it. I'm fascinated by what the Atwater Newbie learns about his new city. I admire people like Josh Marshall and Markos who try to speak the truth about our country.

Barbra Streisand at the Staples Center

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

What can be said? She's a legend. It was a most amazing concert. Barbra was outgoing, funny and in spectacular voice. Though it seems she can't hit the high notes anymore, her voice is lush and warm and emotional. It wraps itself around you and comforts you and, yes, makes you feel like one of the luckiest people in the world.

Thanks to Andrew for securing the luxury box seats.

In many ways, it simply was the best concert I have ever been to.

Friday, November 17, 2006

No War But Class War

As usual, Billmon gets ahead of the curve. The citizens of the country have stood by for the last 25 years and watched as the politicians made the rich richer and the poor poorer. Now, even former Reagan Democrat-turned-Republicans have taken notice and said enough.

Read the whole thing.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Boys Beware

via LAist...My how the times have changed...

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Drawn Together Creator Vomits During TV Interview

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Nancy Pelosi

The next speaker of the house is apparently going to make lesbians of us all, says my favorite post from Wonkette today.

Democrtatic Party

Ok, so we won the House. Maybe the Senate at this point.

Whaat a great night to savor. Let's hope the democrats will now stand up.

I don't have a lot of hope, but i have some. Before tonight, i had much less.

Tomorrow, we wake up, hopefully, in a better world than the one we lived today.

South Dakota Abortion Ban

Goes down to defeat. The universe begins to right itself...but must take pains to remember, two steps forward, one step back. They will be back.

Sweeney Goes Down to Defeat

He literally could have stopped Foley but refused to because it would have meant turning a safe seat into an unsafe seat. As I drove home from dinner listening to NPR, I had the exact same reaction as Josh Marshall: Yes, he is gone!

Good riddance. You did a disservice to your country. You have shamed yourself, your party and your country. Crawl back under the rock from whence you came.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Vote Democratic!

Exercise your franchise! Vote.

Defamer

I do so love the commenters on defamer. Particularly, in this thread, the Ab-Fab/Avatar exchange is priceless. Defarmer, you tickle my world!
Simpsons 2006 Treehouse of Horror Clip

Operation Enduring Occupation.

Vote for change tomorrow!
Shameful

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Bush Administration Lies

The third woman to have died in action killed herself because she was opposed to the interogation methods. That's not what the Pentagon told the world originally. Read more!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

John Stewart and Stephen Colbert

Oh, how I do love them. Watch this clip where they just plain lose it. So funny!

Halloween in Atwater Village

It's refreshing to observe that even in this time when our government seems to have abandoned all sense of rationality, neighborhoods around the country can take a step back and do what they have done for, well, at least part of a century. Atwater Village was no different.

This Halloween, the forces conspired to force me to do what is right. Stay home. No WeHo. No parties. No nothing. My partner left for a short holiday in Chicago and I vowed to stay home and make sure the dogs (for those of you who have read the blog before, you know how i get when the gate is opened) are safe and to deliver candy upon the sweet gremlins of Atwater. I also twisted my ankle something nasty this afternoon. So, I'm subsisting on candy, wine, vodka, advil and the beauty that is Halloween in Atwater.

Old and young, accompanied with parents and dogs, they came in waves. It was beautiful to behold and gives me hope for the future. Oh, and I've got candy and vodka left. God help me tomorrow, cause my ankle is killin' me.

Happy Halloween! God help us -- The X-mas season is upon us now!!
Charles Phoenix's Disneyland Tour of Downtown Los Angeles

Via lacitynerd, a great tour of downtown L.A.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Marilyn Musgrave Attacks

Republican Congressperson showing her true nonresponsive colors.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Dodger Stadium

Though I do love the concept of moving Dodger stadium to the new Cornfield park, I also do so very much love Dodger Stadium. I've been to many stadiums around the country -- old and new, pro and minors -- and the stadium built in Chavez Ravine is still my favorite. Read this great article about the Stadium on ESPN.com.

The Story of Brandon Flowers

It's a killer story. It must be true.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Support Democrats

Today's the last day you can donate to your favorite candidates and have it make a difference in the election. Donate today!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

I'm Voting Democratic

I know that must come as a huge surprise -- not -- but as Josh Marshal says, there are two visions of America. Josh:

"There are different visions in this country. There's one which for all its faults and shortcomings aspires to a national unity that transcends our many differences of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, etc. and an equal share of dignity for all of us. Then there's the school of division and demonization. (Take a look at the ads GOP campaigns are running across the country. The issue of the day is keeping out the Mexicans.) That's the Ken Mehlman school, the tradition of Willie Horton ads and Jungle Music pasted over Harold Ford because these guys are afraid they may be about to lose an open seat in Tennessee, where they haven't sent a Democrat to the senate for almost two decades. It must be a reality that Mehlman appreciates with some measure of inner tension or conflict since gays have been the whipping boys of choice through much of the Bush years even as he himself has been, successively, White House political director, Bush Campaign Manager and head of the RNC. But then we all make our beds."

Read the whole piece and then tell me what you believe. As one idiot leader once said, "You're either with us or you're against us." Which is it?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Los Angeles Cornfield Park

Jesus, three plans have come in and, by God, if one of them isn't just fucking amazingly revolutionary. It moves Dodger Stadium to the park, connects to Elysian Park and remakes Chavel Ravine for low, middle and upper class citizens of L.A.

The other plans lack brilliance.

Who's going to have the balls to make the bold and right decision for the city?

See the plans here.

Paging Hizoner...

Los Angeles Urban Planning

Hizzoner, Mayor Villaraigosa, gives good speech on what it will take to remake this city into a cohesive world class urban village. I likey! Hat tip, to Mark at Metro Rider LA.

New Jersey Same Sex Couples

Congratulations New Jersey. You've just entered the 21st century. Shitstorm Watch 2006 to commence immediately.
LANCE LINK SECRET CHIMP

Unfortunately, a pirate dvd maker has released some of these on dvd. Don't buy them, as they're illegal and low quality. For now, until that gets resolved, you can watch one episode on youtube!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Barbra Streisand

Yeah, I've been on a Babs kick lately, so sue me. It will pass. Meanwhile, somebody has taken the lovely and amsuing epithet that she hurled at a heckler and turned it into a dance song. If that ain't making lemonade out of lemons, I don't know what is. Give a listen!

Monday, October 23, 2006

President Bush on Iraq: It's Never Been

Sunday, October 22, 2006

War is Bad

Hate to break it to you but Atrios is right. War is the result of a failed foreign policy. It should always be the final and last option. This government and the Republican party don't get it. War is, in itself, a definition of failure.

Darfur

Things are totally fucked up in Darfur and if we didn't have a corrupt government hell bent on destroying the United States, Middle East and Korean peninsula, perhaps, more people would think about it. I've added a link to a Darfur relief agency on the right and I pray that somehow this genocide will somehow stop.

Please help.

The Brother of Pat Tillman has something to say.

And you should read it.

Helping Kids

My friend Steve is a teacher at Fairfax High School in Los Angeles. The public schools in L.A., for a long time now, are notorious for not having the wherewithal to provide all the supplies necessary for a good education. Steve's classroom is no different. But you can help. You can adopt a classroom. Find out how.

Shouldn't this generation of kids have the same opportunities that public education offered past generations?

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Cliff Schecter on MSNBC

I love Cliff Schecter! You should too!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Go to TheLot.com - $1M Development Deal with Spielberg

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Gerry Studds - RIP

The first openly gay man elected to congress, Gerry Studds passed away this week. I remember when he came out in the late 80s, early 90s -- yeah, not so long ago -- and what a hoo hah it had made.

He was a brave and honest man. His husband -- Mr. Studds and his partner married in Massachusetts -- unlike husbands and wives of straight congresspeople, will receive no pension.

Seem fair? Seem like special rights or equal rights?

Yeah, I thought so.
David Blaine Street Magic: YouTube Edition!

May be one of the funniest things I have ever seen on goo tube!
Barbra Streisand & Judy Garland Duet

A classic!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Red Colds

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
Barbra Streisand Dancing

Yeah, that's right.
barbra streisand,

you can take the girl outta brooklyn...

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Why the Abbey in West Hollywood Sucks, Part 1

So, I used to love the abbey. And, really, for the most part, it's a great place in southern california to go and take it all in -- if by all, I mean the gay glitteratti, wannabes, upandcomings and the rest. That said, though, it's starting to get on my tits, as it were.

Last night, after work, I met a few friends for some Friday evening cocktails. It was off and on raining and the place was not nearly as crowded as it usually is...which was nice. When it started raining, we moved to the big communal table in the front that's under a roof of some kind. It was lovely.

Then, at 7:30, a manager came over and asked us to leave because somebody had reserved the table...for 7:00. We said, sensibly, that a half hour had past -- no one had said anything to us at 7 -- and we'd be happy to move once the party got there. No dice.

We then move inside and toward the back. Grabbed a couple chairs and began to sit around a tall table. Again, we are told that, now, this section is reserved. Yet, no one is there. Hmm.

So, we finish our drinks and look outside again and, lo and behold, the big communal table is still empty and it's now 8:15. We sit down again and, promptly, a waiter comes out and asks us to vacate the table as it is reserved.

WTF.

If this is how the abbey treats paying, actual guests, no freakin' thank you.

Oh, and other things to note about the abbey:

1. There are no people of color as waiters, bartenders or managers. Come on, folks, this is L.A., not Sioux Falls.

2. Drinks are ludicrously expensive (though they are quite large).

So, we went to here and had one more round of drinks, which was quite fun, less expensive and actually welcoming.

So, enjoy here or, for that matter, Fuel, why don't you?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Viral Videos

Apparently lots of people are creating their own music videos to their own edits of popular tv shows. Love this!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Human Rights Campaign National Coming Out Day Video

Happy Coming Out Day!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

David Frum is Nuts

The Rude Pundit is right. Frum was a speechwriter for Bush, a voice on KCRW's LEFT, RIGHT AND CENTER, and is now a writer for the Nationl Review (sickening, i know).

Anyhow, I used to listen to his lies on LEFT, RIGHT AND CENTER and wonder howBob Scheer could control himself from beating him into a pulp.

All this is not exactly beside the point, as he now has turned his attention to North Korea. Among the many people not to be trusted, Frum falls right behind Bush, Rumsfeld, Rice, Cheney, et al.

Read what the Rude Pundit-- still with us, thankfully -- has to say!

Friday, October 06, 2006

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Somewhere Over The Rainbow--Jai Rodriguez & Patti LeBelle

Oh dear Lord.
Jai Rodriguez & Patti Labelle

Lord have mercy!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Daily Show examines Bush power to legalize torture

A Day in the Life of Atwater Village

A neighbor of mine died yesterday. He died alone, on the sidewalk, in front of a neighbor's house. I didn't know his name, but he was a nice guy. He spoke primarily in spanish, was always genial and I saw him almost every morning that I went for a walk in the neighborhood. Often, he'd be coming back from the liquor store on the corner with La Opinion and a small brown bag. Ocassionally, he smelled like alcohol. Regardless, he was a nice guy, who often reached out to say Buenos Dias.

He died on the sidewalk. Apparently, and I don't know this for sure, but he was on the sidewalk for approximately 4 and a half hours before he was reported to the police. I was at work and was told about the death, but not who it was until this morning. A neighbor, who doesn't speak much english either (he's asian, not latino, but that's one of the things I love about Atwater Village) told me who had died.

The memorial candles and flowers were placed on that spot almost as soon as his body was removed. I wonder if people had been so quick once he was discovered, if the candles and flowers would be necessary.

I hope he wasn't in pain and that he may have found some peace.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

The Whiskey Bar

Billmon's been blogging politics for a long time. I'm a big fan. He's a great writer and always has interesting things to say. That's why I was sad to see that he announced late last week that he would be putting an end to most of his blogging. Well, then, predatorgate reared it's head, and, lo and behold, Billmon hasn't stopped blogging, but is blogging more than in recent memory.

Here's his prescient take on his current situation.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Friday, September 29, 2006

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Vote Democratic

Everything that this president and his party does is for political gain first and foremost. National security, human rights and international law fall far behind or are completely neglected. The fact that anybody in congress voted for the detainee bill is shameful and a terrible black mark in our country's history. The only thing that can deter our country from continuing down the path toward inhumanity and insanity is to vote the Democrats into power. Without governmental checks and balances, not to mention the respect for the fundamental rights of all people, the United States is simply becoming just another tyrannical state. The decision is ours and it must be taken. We must oppose the shredding of our core beliefs. To not do so will ensure the further decline of our once more righteous country.

The future of Mass Transit in L.A.

If only. As one commenter said, they should make t-shirts, sell them for $50, and use the money for awareness. I say use the money to start building the thing. This is a work of beauty!

President Bush Wants His Tyranny Enshrined in Law

Disgusting. If this happens today, it's a shameful day to be an American.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Habeus Corpus Matters

A laywer made it clear to the Senate today. Let's see if they have the balls to stand up for it.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Olbermann demands apology for Bush's Rose Garden Rant

Unacceptable to think?
Janice Janice Janice...

Mom's inhumanity to son has never been quite so funny.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Art Baer RIP

Art Baer was a good man. He was a writer and executive producer for popular television comedies for the better part of 4 decades. He was decent and kind and funny. And he was a sweet friend and colleague of my late stepfather, Mike Marmer.

Art died this past Sunday of cancer. My best wishes go out to his family.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

U.S. Government

Is it Orwellian in its methods and communication? Let Billmon help you decide.

After 9/11, I, like the majority of people in the U.S. and around the world, wanted to find the people responsible and punish them. I still do, but my confidence in our government began waning as soon as Bush came out with the language of "War Against Terror". I thought then and I think now that they used 1984 as a means to their ends...and their ends is never the end of terror. For with an end to terror, they have nothing.

Canele

My goodness. Amid all the spam in comments (ironic for a post about a new restaurant) were two decidedly negative comments about the new place. It's a shame your meal was not a great experience, but I say give the place a chance. It was opening weekend and my meal was delicious. Sure there were a few problems, but I think it's great that a fresh new restaurant has come to our "village".

Sunday, September 17, 2006

American Torture Sanctified

Read and then do something about it. These people are without souls.

Income Disparity....Continues

The rich get richer. Income saw a growth of 7% nationally, but who saw that income? The middle class? The working class? Ah, not so much. Really, how soon til we dig trenches around our big cities?

Stephen Hadley is an Asshole

And a war criminal.

Common Article III

Yeah, what DK says. Is it really vague or spot on?

U.S. Government Breaks International Laws

Over 14,000, it was reported today, are beind held without due process in the so-called "war against terror". When the phrase first made an appearance back in 2001, many suspected the phrase would easily become a tool of power and undefinable. Fortunately (and really late, but still appreciated), the press is awakening to this -- particularly because it's their own that they need to protect.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Canele in Atwater Village

Ate there tonight and it was delicious. Warm atmosphere, great buzz, nice help. Sure, they're working some opening weekend bugs out, but the food was great.

We started with an heirloom tomato salad with feta, cucumbers and olives. We asked for no olives -- as was noted on our check-- but they came anway. Despite them,. the salad was fab. Light, sweet and tangy.

Next up, I had the beef medalions and Carl had the red snapper. The snapper was a little undercooked, but deliciously rich and buttery. My beef was absolutely sensational. Moist, tasty and completely finished. It came with savory potatoes and great spinach -- i guess e coli was extra...

We finished with the chocolate/almond cake with ice cream The cake was tasty, but a wee bit hard and cold. The ice cream was fantastic and the combination was superb. My only wish is that the cake was warmer and more moist.

Overall, a very encouraging and tasty start for Canele. Can't wait to return!

Habeas Corpus

The NY Times has a great op-ed piece from a former prisoner at Gitmo about the importance of Habeas Corpus. The bottom line is that if our government does not give those people it holds in prison the right to challenge their incarceration, we have lost oh-so-much moral standing.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Look Out for Cockroaches

(Thank you, Anthony, may I have another?)
The Colbert Report - 2006.09.14 - Ethnic Friends

Calling all ethnic americans!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

That was the week was

It's a new segment on Katie's CBS News that follows web happenings, but my favorite thing about is the title. That Was The Week That Was was actually a news satire on TV decades ago and I'm betting they have no idea. How sweet is that?
Now That's Entertainment!!! ...with Reginald Westinghouse!!!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Ann Richards

RIP.

To this day, I'll never understand how W beat her in the Texas Governor's race. Though, I'm guessing that, perhaps, foul play was involved.

Here's her keynote speech from the 1988 Democratic convention.
Best. Interview. Ever.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Trader Joes

Their toilet paper, as Atwater Newbie so delicately points out, is like east german sandpaper.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

9/11

A few quotes about death...

Too many people are thinking of security instead of opportunity. They seem more afraid of life than death.
- James F. Byrnes

Never chase a lie. Let it alone, and it will run itself to death.
- Lyman Beecher

Even the fear of death is nothing compared to the fear of not having lived authentically and fully.
- Frances Moore Lappe

Almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.
- Steve Jobs (largest Disney investor)

To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep:
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to,--'t is a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub:
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause: there's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life;
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely,
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office and the spurns
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscover'd country from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all;
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprises of great pith and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry,
And lose the name of action.
- William Shakespeare

Cowards die many times before their deaths;
The valiant never taste of death but once.
Of all the wonders that I yet have heard,
It seems to me most strange that men should fear;
Seeing that death, a necessary end,
Will come when it will come.
- William Shakespeare

and lastly (though, I certaily can go on):

No man is an Island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the Continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friends or of thine own were; any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee.
- John Donne

I hope and pray that those that lost their lives on 9/11 have found peace...because we have not.

Canele!

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Ok, here's what the outside looks like now. Warmn sorta butter and chocolate on the outside while inside is a deep purple.

It's very inviting.

(Yes, that's me in the reflection of the window. So, sue me.)

Canele!

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us
Great news! Canele is opening in the former Osteria Nonni space and they have done a tremendous job in fixing up the space. It's now a warm, pleasant, modern space and the dream come true for new-owner and new-restauranter Corina (not sure how to spell her name).

I walked in this warm Sunday afternoon and, though they are not open, they welcomed me in. They were testing out their menu and it smelled heavenly. Though I do miss Nonni, they had not updated their menu or their space in more than 10 years. The new look is refreshing and the smell was more than promising.

Canele opens this coming Friday and will be open for dinners Tuesday - Sunday. Corina hopes to add Lunch and Brunch as well.

I know I'm going this coming weekend!

Atwater Starbucks and Such

Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Yes it's true. Starbucks is going into the old Atwaters Ranch Market. While we certainly don't need another Starbucks -- and I'll be buying my baked goods at the locally-owned Rollin' Pin Bakery and getting my rare outside-work-or-home coffee at Kaldi -- it will benefit the many people who drive down Glendale in the morning and it has already forced both Rollin' Pin and Kaldi to spruce up.

However, I'm more concerned about what might be going in next door. I walked onto the site and a construction worker told me that an H&R Block is going in. All this time, I've heard about a Wine Shop/Cafe --something that a worker at Kaldi reiterated -- was slated for the space. And that would be ideal. An H&R Block would be a total waste of the great newly configured space. Come on, people.

Does anyone know for sure what's going in there?

World Trade Center

The NY Times has a fantastic photo essay of the Towers.

My first real memory of the Towers comes from a time when I really visited NY for the first time as an adult. I was in school at Brandeis and decided to come down to Brooklyn with a friend who was from Brooklyn Heights (Hi Adam!). He lived just across the Brooklyn Bridge from lower Manhattan and one day we decided to ride bikes across the bridge to the Trade Center.

We did and it was magnificent.
Maypole dance from The Wicker Man

They sure don't make movies like they used to (via fourfour.typepad.com)!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

LAX Sucks Ass

Having had the opportunity to do a lot of travel for work this summer and last summer in the United States -- literally North, South, East and West -- I can honestly say that LAX just plain sucks ass.

Even Minneapolis and Phoenix have stellar airports with trams, multiple eateries, newstands and more. Minneapolis even had comfortable leather-like chairs dotted around big windows for a relaxing read of the paper.

LAX has not been updated since just prior to the 84 Olympics. Now, I know Hahn had a terrible plan which thankfully was shelved and now Villaraigosa has added remote check-ins at shuttle stops, but that's just a bandaid. Some improvements that just need to happen asap:

1. Extend the freakin' greenline to the airport. Politicians caved to Airport Shuttle/Parking Lot companies. Show some freakin' courage already.

2. Once within a terminal and screened by security, you should be able to transfer to another terminal without having to go through security again. Cheese and Rice!

3. Add some sort of connection to the Theme Restaurant from every terminal (already passed security) -- maybe O'Hare like tunnels. For God's sake, it's a great looking restaurant that is so sadly underused because no one wants to go there and then have to find their way to their terminal.

4. More food.

5. If an airline -- Taca, for example -- has regularly scheduled late late night flights, please have a restaurant and bookshop open in the same terminal.

Thank you.

Aging Can be a Bitch

Right Gary?

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

9/11 Anniversary and Saying No to ABC Right-wing Propoganda

This is an email I sent out to friends tonight:

I don 't do this often (anymore) and I apologize for the mass email, but ABC is about to air a "docudrama" about 9/11 that is patently false and has been designed to politicize the terrible events of that day to the benefit of the republican party that has lead this country to a much less safe position in the world.

Take a moment and let your voice be heard:

http://www.democrats.org/page/pt/pathto911/c74glrkxyr8o

Oh, and tell a friend, why don't you?

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Good night and good luck

Olberman is on fire, via atrios.

Speak truth to power and eventually, hopefully, people will listen.

He's very eloquent and quite damning. Read it.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Corporations Aren't Evil...

With apologies to to Jessica Rabbit, they're just drawn that way. What Kevin Drum says:

But I will (partly) concede one point to Mallaby: it's foolish to paint Wal-Mart or the broader business community as "evil." They aren't, any more than ordinary human beings are evil. It's just that, left to their own devices, both humans and corporations tend to act solely in their own self-interest. That's why we have laws to control human behavior, and it's why we need laws and regulations to control corporate behavior. I prefer a society in which people don't gun each other down in the streets, and I also prefer a society in which middle class workers prosper when the economy grows. I support laws that encourage both.

Read the whole thing! The bottom line is that we need business regulations because unregulated, business will do first what's best for business. To hell with morality. And that's why good government works for the people.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Starbucks

There's one coming to Atwater Village. Don't know if I'm thrilled by it or not, probably not, as there's one nearby already on the edge of Atwater and Silver Lake. Think there's another one on by the big box retail on Los Feliz. Do we need another one? Anyway, here's a good story about L.A. Starbucks.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Katrina plus one year

How are things going? Well, not so well, really. See the rudepundit for one visit to a lovely fema trailerpark and feel proud to be an American.
Shoes

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Bad L.A. Days

What was the worst day in the city's history? LACityNerd wants to know and has come up with a few suggestions. I added the 1938 flood, but, personally, I think the Northridge Quake shook me up the most. For at least six months, I wouldn't take long showers. For much longer, when I heard the wind howl, I assumed we were fixin' for a big one.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Snakes on a Plane Mark
2 Chinese Boys Sing Jessica Simpson

hey, not my title, but it works.
Bruno - In Alabama

New Orleans 1 Year Later

Just more than half the population is back, but only 1/3 of the schools will open. The Fed government (as well as state and local governments) have let these people down. Help them out and visit FriendsandFamily.org!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

'82 Tonys--Dreamgirls

Oh, Lord have mercy. If this doesn't give you goosebumps and makes you want to break out into a long crying jag, nothing will.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Happy Leo Birthdays

To:

Jon
Doug
John
Melissa
me
Mary
Jen
Howard
Gary
Carl
Paula
Dave
Steve

I'm sure I'm missing somebody...

New York Subway

I was just in New York for work this past weekend -- first time in the city in about 4 years -- and I had the joy of riding the subway downtown. I grabbed the 7 at 50th and Broadway and climbed aboard a very crowded train Sunday early afternoon. I found a seat next to two kids -- hey, I guess NY really has safened up as they were riding alone -- and immediately sat down.

Oops, I'm wet. I sat in wet. Not good. It happens. I maintained my dignity, as best I could, and sorta half got up and slid my butt over to the next seat over...which was also wet! And, that's when one of the kids turned to me and said, I shit you not, "That seat's got water on it too." Yeah, no shit, kid. Maybe speak up next time before I sit down the first time...or at least the second time. And, I'm thinking and singing, "I love New York..."

So, now, back of shorts drenched, I stand. I've got blocks to go, stations to pass, before I get off. I'm just hoping that somehow I'll dry off before I hit the Village. Well, no matter how hot it is --and it is August in NY-- you can't just go from soaking wet to dry in 5 stations...but I was in luck.

The car stopped at 14th and somebody who speaks absolutely no discernible language gets on the PA to rattle on about something. I duitifully ignore. The car does not move for about five minutes and then....and then...it starts heading back up town. Wait, I think. This is not right. This, I don't think, is the direction we were going a minute ago. Nope. It's the opposite.

Drat! Still wet. I get off at 18th and, though I know I'm a mere 10 blocks or so from the village, I want to confirm it before I start to walk, as I'm meeting Andrew for brunch. So, I slide next to the ticketbooth lady and politely ask her how long of a walk is it to the Village. After 30 seconds of eye rolling, she deigns to lean forward to press her talk button and says exasperatingly, "What dear?" I repeat my question with a big smile, she pauses for another 30 seconds of concentrated eye rolling, presses said button again and says, "Yeah."

And then, signifying the end of the conversation, she theatrically releases the talk button. She is done.

And after ten minutes walking in the blazing sun and stiff breeze, I met Andrew and still looked like I was June Allyson on a bad day.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Grape Stompin'

oh oh oh ow. oh oh oh. i can't breathe. oh, ow. oh.
tv news bloopers
Will & Grace - Bloopers

Eh, why not. 'Tis funny.
TV Presenter Can't Stop Laughing

Friday, August 04, 2006

Best Satire Site Ever.

Serious. You must read cause it's funny. Get to know News As Gossip. Very funny!

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Peace

Yeah, and love and understanding!

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Gay Marriage

Though it seems to be taking quite a few hits lately, no matter what, love finds a way.

Congrats ladies!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Saturday, July 22, 2006

The Right is Turning on Itself

Billmon speak. You listen.
After The Garden is Gone

Neil Young rocking with Al Gore in a not so free world.

Monday, July 17, 2006

The Internets

Though just a buncha tubes, this Internet thing might end up being something after all.

Via Kyle

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Apple Pie

This is as american as apple pie (parental advisory). Via Alterman.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

U.S. Economy

How's it doing? Well, as it turns out, not so great.

Friday, July 07, 2006

So Fake it's Real


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Habibi's (not got) Falafels


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Yeah, so here it is "open". Notice bright lgiht in window is actually from Film Lighting apparatus. Sigh.

Habibi's Falafel or How My Dreams of Middle Eastern Food Were Shattered


DSC05056
Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Saturday, I'm on my regular constitutional through the neighborhood of Atwater Village and, lo and behold, a new middle eastern restaurant where before was a longrunning Philipino Market. I'm thrilled. THRILLED. I haven't had a good falafel since I lived in Hollywood and Me and Me at the corner of Crescent Heights and Santa Monica closed. THRILLED!

So, Wednesday night after work, I decide to walk by and maybe purchase some falafel and hummus. Well, upon close inspection, it's closed. Looks great, though. Big counter, nice floor, few tables...but wait. There are two tall stands. Could it be? Is it possible?

Next day, EatingLA shatters my dreams. It's a set for a new movie starring Tony Shaloub! Dreams of a falafel within walking distance crushed! Oh, Los Angeles!

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Ann Coulter is a Liar

By that, I mean, of course, a plagiarist. Why does any news outlet use her? Your days are numbered, hack!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

National Sales Tax is a Bad Idea, Andrew

Yeah, I said it. To replace income tax with a national sales tax will put an undue burden on the middle class and poor. Many years ago, The Washington Post did a comprehensive story on tax policy and firmly agreed that a national sales tax would be extremely regressive.

What the federal government should be doing -- and won't for some time -- is restore the progressive nature of our income tax laws to where they were pre-Reagan. Over the past 30-odd years, the rich have been getting richer (more so in the past decade) and the middle class and poor have been getting poorer. If these trends continue, the country will consist of an Upper class and Lower class. Not a good model for success, n'cest pa?

Here are some solid graphs of how there is now a greater divide between the wealthy and not-so-wealthy people in this county. Basically, according to faireconomy.org,



Income for the top 1% skyrocketed 201% between 1979 and 2000.
Meanwhile, income for the middle 20% rose only 15% and income for the
bottom 20% rose only 9%.

So, if we return tax rates to pre-Reagan, we might just be able turn this trend around and begin to rebuild our infrastructure, provide equal educational opportunities to all people, restore the safety net, provde national health care and, heck, even fund our illegal and immoral wars.

And don't tell me that if the wealthy are taxed more that the economy will be sent into a tailspin, millions will lose their jobs and on and on. Save your breath.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Gitmo, Torture and the Supreme Court

Today, for what feels like the first time since before the 2000 election, one branch of our government stood up and did what was right. The Supreme Court today ruled:

1. torture is bad
2. holding people without due process is bad
3. breaking the geneva convention is bad

Not sure what kind of impact this will have other than offering a glimmer of hope that not everyone running this country has gone batshit insane.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Plane Sunset


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

A long painfully beautiful blue sunset from the plane, heading west.

Our Plane


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

San Jose Airport


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

The runway through a window.

San Jose Airport


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Country Path


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Smoking


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Scary Bridge


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

One of three...

Rubber Factory near Jaco


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Manuel Antonio Sunset


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Closer to Sunset


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Almost Sunset


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Me


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

More backlighting...or frontlighting...or just favorable lighting.

Hotel Arboleda


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

The Hotel Arboleda


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

A rundown hotel at the bottom of the hill, next to the beach. They dragged our our lounge chairs every morning (before we arrived), and served us drinks as long as we were there.

Carl kind of enjoying the tide.


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

It was high and it was moving on.

Carl and tree enjoying the beach


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

The view from the living room.


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Monkey see, monkey do


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

One of our visitors one morning. Honestly, this one morning, hundreds of monkeys were frolicking on our deck and in our trees for hours.

A fruit and a big iguana...


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

with Carl nervously watching on.

A Big old Iguana and his fruit


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Me


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

I've never looked better. I must always insist on extreme backlighting. It eliminates all the flaws -- phycsical and emotional.

Jon and the beach


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

A view from our beach in Manuel Antonio


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Costa Rican Sunsets...


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

aren't done unless they are overdone.

Carl and me at Sunset


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

San Jose, Costa Rica...


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

or on the way to the moon.

Jon and Carl


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Also known as hot Jon and hot Carl...while in jacuzzi.

More view


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

How Green was my gorge


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

View from the Canyon House

City Building in San Jose, Costa Rica


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Cathedral in San Jose


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Stuck

While we´ve had an amazing and relaxing time in Costa Rica, yesterday at the airport was not so much. While waiting for 3+ hours in line at the airport to get our boarding passes for long-ago bought tickets home, our seats were sold.

No announcement, no warning, no nothing.

We threw the hissy fit of all time. They asked people to disboard and receive compensation. No takers.

We were given overnight accommodations, meals, transportation back to airport, upgrades to biz and 200-dollar vouchers for future flights. Still, it is not enough. We wanted to go home. Our dogsitter, the valiant pasquale- wanted to stop sitting. Our jobs expected us back.

So, now, our friend Jon who through very lucky circumstances did board and made it home and we are here. It will be interesting to see what fate has in store.

Back tonight. Tomorrow, many pics from the beautiful country and not so many from the less than beautiful airport.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Holiday Drag Names

Greta Carbo or Oscar Gone Wilde.

Yes, lots of eating and drinking.

Details to follow.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

First 4 Corners of Los Angeles

I had no idea about this but, as usual, LA City Nerd sheds some light. It seems that Akbar is in the location of the former northwest corner of the city of Los Angeles! So cool.

Los Angeles

LA is a harsh mistress, but she's my lady.

- Vince Vaughn on KROQ, June 2, 2006

Atwater Newbie

How much do I love the Atwater Newbie blog? Quite a bit. He (95% sure he's a he) is a great voice for another neighborhood in a city-state of great neighborhoods! Read him, why don't you?

Take Public Transit

I just added a link to Metro Rider LA -- a new site, founded in part by a friend and co-worker -- on the right and I encourage anyone in LA who cares about doing something about traffic, congestion, pollution to check it out.

I may not ride the bus or rails a lot, but I do want to and this site can help me do that. And, remember as I've said before, if you can walk, don't drive. Most of Angelenos live in some neighborhood where you don't have to drive to the bank, the grocery store, the coffee joint.

Walking makes both you, your neighborhood and your city healthier.

And for God's sake, if you can take a bus or train, do it. Find out how much more reading you can get done and take a look at what your fellow citizens look like as seen not through tinted glass windows.

Monday, June 12, 2006

LA Gay Pride


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.

Amazing that the paper of record in Los Angeles would have only 2 black and white photos and no story about Gay Pride. This is an event that draws more than 300,000 people to the streets of West Hollywood to celebrate diversity in one of the country's most diverse cities. Surely, it would warrant a short story? What gives?

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Jen's Blog

This is an example of sombody taking a concept that they love -- children's books -- and really, truly making an excellent, entertaining and informative blog about it.

Read it!

Overheard Conversation

Person 1: "I don't have a phony bone in my body."

(beat)

(beat)

Person 2: "It's all cartiledge."

(Thank you and good night!)

Tattered


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Originally uploaded by miles10001.