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2016 Japanese Car Show and debut of 2017 Nissan GT-R Nismo

September 25, 2016 at 3:34 pm in Driving, Entertainment, Long Beach, Transportation

For anyone that that thinks an Asian Car Show would be a niche market, think again.  They even charged admission and people lined up for blocks at the Queen Mary yesterday to see it.  A crowd as diverse as all of Los Angeles was there for great cars and a trip down memory lane.  Something some would think not possible when these cars first started selling here in the 60s and 70s given the “buy ‘murican” attitude of the time.  A lot has changed and to say they are mainstream and dominant is an understatement.  Hence this show was also the Los Angeles debut for the 2017 Nissan GT-R Nismo. Read the rest of this entry →


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5th Annual Galpin Car Show Sunday September 18

September 13, 2016 at 8:17 am in Driving, Entertainment, Events, The Valley, Transportation

Galpin Mark IV Mustang funny car dragster...click to embiggen

Galpin Mark IV Mustang funny car dragster…click to embiggen

Mark your calendars for something a little bit different. Galpin Auto in the Valley is hosting a car show. Not just any car show, but one dedicated to rare custom automobiles of all makes.  There will be hundreds of beautiful, one-of-a-kind, unique show cars and exciting new activities for the whole family to see and enjoy!

The show will take place Sunday September 18 from 10AM-2PM at Galpin Auto.  Their address is 15505 Roscoe Blvd, Van Nuys 91343.  This show is FREE to the public.  More information here at the FB Page.


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27th Annual Street Rods Forever Car Show

September 11, 2016 at 9:20 am in Driving, Entertainment, Events, San Gabriel Valley, Transportation

It was quite the car show yesterday.  Very heavy with the customs and one that stood out so far above the others I called it my personal favorite and named it “best of show”  The work this young man out into an old Mercury chopping, channeling, lowering and flaming was simply amazing.

Mercury low rider, chopped, channeled and flaimed, click to embiggen

Mercury low rider, chopped, channeled and flaimed, click to embiggen

More pics in my flickr album from the show.


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Car Show this Saturday in Monrovia…and its zipcode day too

September 8, 2016 at 8:38 am in Driving, Entertainment, Events, Food & Drink, LA, Mass Transit, San Gabriel Valley, Shopping, Transportation

Its debatable which is the bigger deal in Old Town Monrovia this Saturday. The Umpteenth Annual Street Rods Forever Car Show or Zipcode Day Celebrations…a local holiday celebrating the zip code and date coinciding 9/10/16 in the 91016.  My personal favorite is the Street Rods Forever car show as, well, its all about the cars.

Street Rods Forever will occupy Myrtle Avenue from the 300 South Block down to the 800 South Block in the heart of Old Town Monrovia from 9AM-2PM.

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Amazing city lights timelapse of Los Angeles

August 20, 2016 at 11:54 am in Media, Photography, Which Side?

simply stunning, love the planes zipping along to LAX and our other airports…


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210 closures in Pasadena again this weekend

August 10, 2016 at 8:24 am in Driving, LA, News, San Gabriel Valley, Transportation

map courtesy CalTrans twitter feed

map courtesy CalTrans twitter feed

We’ll call this PASAGEDDON part 3 and 4.  Short version is the 210 closures will affect those trying to sneak into town from the valley on the 118/210EB this weekend for fun in Old Town.

Beginning 7PM Saturday August 13, 2016 until 5AM August 15 the 210 East Bound will be closed at Mountain Avenue to Lake Avenue.  The 134 West transition road from the 210 East will also be closed.  The exit ramps at Mountain/Lincoln will also be closed.

These closures will be repeated again August 27 at 7PM until August 29 at 5AM.

The easiest, but likely congested work around detour will be to follow 210EB to the 2SB then transition to the 134EB and reconnect with the 210 in Pasadena.


Cabinet of Curiosities unveils mysterious worlds viewed through peepholes at Union Station

August 2, 2016 at 1:00 pm in Art, Downtown, Mass Transit, Transportation

A peek inside artist David DiMichele's Cabinet​

A peek inside artist David DiMichele’s Cabinet​

DTLA’s iconic Union Station unveils the Cabinet of Curiosities, an original installation of mysterious worlds viewed through peepholes, created by a group of Los Angeles-based artists. The exhibit will open to the public on August 6 and remain on display during station operating hours through August 31. A special reception with the artists, open to the public, will be held on Sunday, August 7 from 3 – 6pm.

Curated by Carl Berg, the exhibit showcases original works from artists Tanya Brodsky, David DiMichele, Ashley Hagen, Noel Korten, Keith Lord, Cecilia Miniucchi and Andre Yi.

Cabinet of Curiosities will feature a visual glimpse into the artists’ world not on a grand scale but rather on a more personal level. Only one person can view the artworks in the exhibition at a time, giving the viewer his or her own intimate experience. It requires active participation by the viewer something often lost in a world of digital billboards, video screens at gas stations, and smart devices on which you can watch movies.

“We’re delighted to bring this intriguing installation to our Grand Waiting Room,” said Ken Pratt, Metro’s Director of Union Station Property Management. “Our goal is to surprise and engage commuters, tourists and others traveling through the station with an unexpected and fanciful art experience.”

“Cabinet of Curiosities” refers to a European practice from the 16th Century, also known as Kunstkabinett, Wunderkammer, Cabinets of Wonder, and wonder-rooms, which were encyclopedic collections of objects and were regarded as microcosms or theaters of the world and were a precursor to the first museums.

These unique worlds formed from an assemblage of objects and in many ways functioned as a library of these objects, not unlike computers and the Internet, by creating relationships between things.

The exhibition however is inherently not digital and the artworks created for this exhibition were mostly handmade by the artists themselves. A throw-back to an era were mystery was created by crafting objects that used visual phenomenon to trick the viewer into seeing something that is really not what is seems to be.

Cabinet of Curiosities is part of Union Station’s first-ever summer entertainment series that spans unique events, thought provoking cultural programs and live music, free to the public throughout the summer season. For more information on Cabinet of Curiosities and summer programs at Union Station visit unionstationla.com.

About Union Station:
Built in 1939, Union Station is the largest railroad passenger terminal in the Western United States. Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980, the station’s signature Mission Moderne style makes it one of L.A.’s architectural gems. Today, the station has evolved into a vibrant transportation center serving 75,000 passengers daily. Union Station is currently in the first phase of a Master Plan that will enable it to better handle the growing number of transit riders, accommodate high-speed rail and serve as one of L.A.’s premier public spaces while protecting the historic core of the station. For more information, visit unionstationla.com. Connect with Union Station on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


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Art Walk…art, entertainment and art Saturday 7/30

July 26, 2016 at 4:09 pm in Art, Entertainment, Photography, San Gabriel Valley, Seasonal, Shopping

Monrovia Association of Fine Arts is hosting its annual Art Walk in the heart of Old Town Monrovia.  There will be several local artists with various media well represented.  Among those showcasing their work will be this fall’s Celebrate the Arts Featured Artist, Steve McCarthy.  One to watch for is up and coming artist Elizabeth “Isa” Martinez from the Art Institute of Chicago who is a recent Monrovia High graduate.

As always there will be a variety of music in Old Town Monrovia with one of the bands, a jazz band, playing in the heart of the Art Walk.

Once there pop into one of the many new bars and restaurants for a quick cocktail and stroll the Art Walk. Have several and use public transportation to get to Old Town.

Parking can be tough to find in Old Town Monrovia on weekends.  I HIGHLY recommend you take the Gold Line to the Monrovia Station, show your tap card or paid stub and you get a free ride into Old Town courtesy the city transit.  It runs fairly frequently from Station Square to Library Park.  From Library Park its a short 1 block walk to the Art Walk.  IF you simply park at Station Square the shuttle costs a thin buck for the ride.

Deets: July 30, 7-10 PM.  400 and 500 block of South Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia CA 91016


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Adult Art Night at Paint ‘n’ Play Art Studio and Gallery July 30

July 21, 2016 at 9:11 am in Art, Entertainment, Food & Drink, News, People, San Gabriel Valley

Flyer for the event...click to embiggen

Flyer for the event…click to embiggen

This is going to be fun.  A night of nurturing your inner 12 yo with art and limbered up with some right tasty craft brews by Pacific Plate Brewery.  This event is supported by Paint ‘n’ Play Art Studio and Gallery as well as Monrovia Association of Fine Arts.

The art instruction will be given by reknowned local artist Elizabeth Jewell Butterfield who was has also been a past Featured Artists with Monrovia Association of Fine Arts.  You can reserve a spot by calling 626-256-4848 or emailing Ms Jewell direct at bjewell51@yahoo.com

This isn’t free, but the $45 fee includes all materials and your Craft Beer.  IMHO its well worth the cost of admission for an evening of art with Ms Butterfield, the craft beer is the icing on the proverbial cake!

Deets:Saturday July 30, 2016 7PM-9PM  418 S Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia CA 91016  626-256-4848


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210 Freeway closures 7/15 and 7/29…its PASAGEDDON!

July 14, 2016 at 8:06 am in Driving, San Gabriel Valley, Transportation

pasageddonYou can see the full press release from CALTRANS HERE, but the short of it is the 210 West Bound will be closed two complete weekends in July for improvements and repaving.  TWO FULL Weekends.  The closure will be from Lake Avenue west to Mountain will be completely shut down.  Rerouting through city streets will be a joke…best is to transition to the 134 West then 2 north to rejoin the 210 in LaCrescenta.  With traffic stinking so bad my suggestion is if you absolutely need to be in Pasadena those weekends, take the Gold Line.

Added bonus is the EB 134 connector to the 210 will also be closed.

Weekend closures are as follows:

  • July 15 10PM through July 18 5AM
  • July 29 10PM through August 1 5 AM

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Tiki art sale and show at the Tonga Tiki Hut Lounge in NoHo Sunday 7/17

July 13, 2016 at 8:32 am in Art, Entertainment, Food & Drink, Shopping, The Valley

Postcard from the Tiki Art Sales...bu Rick Kess no less, click to embiggen.

Postcard from the Tiki Art Sales…by Rick Kess no less, click to embiggen.

This is going to be fun.  Tiki art with a modern twist and vibe will be on show and sale this coming Sunday at the Tonga Tiki Hut Lounge in North Hollywood starting at 2PM.

One of the featured artists will be Rick Kess and his Design Krime Studio works.  He will have originals available for sale as well as extremely affordable prints that are prefect for display and framing.  Not to brag, but I do have a bias for Rick’s work and proudly have 3 pieces on display in my office and home.  Really witty and well executed tiki, mid century mod themed pieces that I hope you will like as much as I do when you see them.

More details on the art and artists to be there on a FB page.  While there pop into the Tonga Hut for a cold libation and enjoy the vintage dive bar atmosphere.

Deets: Sunday 7/17/2016 2PM until ?,Tonga Hut Tiki Lounge 12808 Victory Blvd, North Hollywood, California 91606 (818) 769-0708


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Arroyo Seco Freeway…L.A’s first to the ‘burbs

July 8, 2016 at 8:26 am in Driving, History, LA, Transportation, Vintage

Hard to imagine this film is from 77 years ago…those old Kodachromes stood the test of time.  The freeway hasn’t changed much over the years, the grassy median is gone replace with concrete.  The sharp turns and those instant on and off ramps exist in many parts.  The individual lanes aren’t color coded but marked with botts dots nots, but every fun unbanked curve and straights still exists as it was when it opened.


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Sierra Madre Playhouse opens new musical July 8th

July 1, 2016 at 2:55 pm in Entertainment, San Gabriel Valley, Theatre/Stage

flyer for "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" click to embiggen

flyer for “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” click to embiggen

25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is hysterically funny with poignant back stories of the contestants woven into a solid musical production.  On the heals of last years rousing success of “Always…Patsy Cline” the Sierra Madre Playhouse isn’t resting on its laurels and promises to be a fun filled interactive evening with the cast as the group take a bunch of spelling champs through their paces spelling in a contest.

Added bonus most nights, but especially opening night you get to meet the cast and crew of the production after the play.  Its scheduled to run July 8 through August 21.  Order tickets HERE.

Sierra Madre Playhouse is a really lovely 99 Seat Theatre located just a west of Baldwin on Sierra Madre Avenue.  Its a short walk to several find eateries and a wonderful dive bar “The Buccaneer”.

Deets: Sierra Madre Playhouse 87 W Sierra Madre Blvd, Sierra Madre 91024 626-355-4318

 


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#FishFire in my ‘hood…news and information for those affected

June 21, 2016 at 9:54 am in Fires, News, Seasonal, Weather

Fish Fire from my front porch this morning at dawn. Click to embiggen

Fish Fire from my front porch this morning at dawn. Click to embiggen

It started late morning yesterday in Duarte and worked its way up towards Fish Canyon.  Know as the “Fish Fire”, it and the nearby “Morris Dam Fire” have consumed some 5400 acres of brush at this writing and growning. As of the 9AM press conference there was zero containment.  L.A County fire spokesman said that within 24 hours there will be enough progress that the fire will no longer be a threat to homes.

Duarte has had mandatory evacuations in place for homes north of Royal Oaks Drive between Olive and Encanto since yesterday afternoon.

L.A County Fire has put the city of Bradbury and the portion of Monrovia East of Myrtle and North of Foothill Blvd as potential evacuation zones in the event the wind shifts and blows the fires towards those cities.  Right now I sit in that expanded zone of potential evacuations…not a comfortable space to be.

Its been an interesting experience watching the communities bind and help each other.  Duarte quickly reached capacity at their Community Center and Monrovia stepped up and opened theirs for evacuees.

Its not limited to just community governments helping.  Businesses such as Wonderdog Ranch opened up for evacuated small pets.


Just Vin, Baby!

June 18, 2016 at 2:45 pm in Celebrity, History, LA, People, Radio, Sports, Television

2346672-2346671-home_vin_scullyEarlier this month, I crowed via social media about getting a pair of cheap seats to the Vin Scully Appreciation Game at Dodgers Stadium this coming September and how by not spending $1,400 for field-level butt rests I would have mooooore than enough to get me a customized Dodgers jersey honoring The Greatest Broadcaster Of Aaaaaaall Times who I unabashedly idolize and cherish!

Turns out easier said than done.

But let me back and fill for those who might be entirely and inexplicably clueless. Vincent Edward Scully, 88, has been the Los Angeles Dodgers announcer since they were the Brooklyn Dodgers back in the year Nineteen Hundred and Fifty. Last year, The Beloved Institution That He Is announced his retirement would commence at the end of this his Sixty-Seventh season behind the mic. If that two-digit number doesn’t blow you away, what’s wrong with you!? Sorry, didn’t mean to snap. What I mean is: think on that kind of longevity a little harder. What’s the longest job you’ve ever held? Me, it’s six years. Next, factor in this nebulous and dysfunctional City Of Change that we call home, and how its landmarks have been torn down and built over and torn down again and again forming sedimentary stacks of reinvention rising upon a foundation of disregard for our past. Then mix in the changes the Dodgers as an organization have been through these last 20 years alone? Lastly mix in the fact that most of us came from somewhere else and a lot of us remain unrooted to L.A. as a permanent base.

All the while, there has been Scully. Since the Dodgers moved here in 1958, there has been Scully. Every single year of my old-ass life as a native Angeleno and Dodgers fan: There. Has. Been. Scully. If his landmark status previously eluded you, maybe now you can see how people such as myself have formed such an attachment to this humble extraordinary man — who, incidentally, would be the first to dismiss such adoration. Maybe now you can see how people such as myself are among hundreds of thousands who really can’t fathom our town or its soundwaves without Scully in it. I still can’t fully wrap my head around the idea of his “It’s time for Dodger baseball!” opener at every home game not ringing out next year.

But let’s return now to my original point: the jersey!

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