’08 August

Carl&Lynn’s patio, Bergamot Station, Long Beach Art Museum, Cabrillo Aquarium, Watts Towers, LA Downtown!, Oxnard Air Show, Hollywood Bowl, and a heck of a lot more.

A story, something about…

August 18

A story, something about Hanoi, was on the radio. I don’t remember anything about the story, because I immediately began re-living my few days in Hanoi and wanting to recommend to all – it’s a great city.

Like Lonely Planet says “The capital of Vietnam is a city of timeless grace, a grand old dame of Asia who is aging better than most of her contemporaries… Hanoi’s center today is a quixotic blend of Parisian grace and Asian pace, an architectural museum piece evolving in harmony with its history, rather than bulldozing through it like many of the region’s capitals.”

Carl and Lynn built…

August 31

Carl and Lynn built themselves a California Beachtown Livingroom in the Sky. The new deck is above the studio behind the house.

Venice Beach, kickin’ it….

Venice Beach, kickin’ it. (We used to say ‘kick back’ or ‘hang out’ and then I learned ‘kickin’ it’ or alternatively, ‘kickin”, but I am 99% sure ‘kickin” is waaay passe by now.)

The back door to…

The back door to the house in on the left. This is looking towards the studio and above to the deck.

Great inauguration party! …

Great inauguration party! Thanks to all for your entertaining, smart, sweet, and kindly selves.

I enjoyed myself entirely especially with the arrival of The New People. You are lovely and most welcome, and we will no longer refer to you as ‘Who are Those New People?’.

from the left:
Gerry Ginsburg, Barbara Rever, Bonnie Pastor.
Bob Ginsburg, Chaz Austin.
Lynn Rosenfield, Sandra Kunsburg, Robert Rosenfield, Nina Asher, Steve Raiken, Ben Pomerantz, Monica Blauner.

We had a yummy…

August 30

We had a yummy dinner party at Roger and Sandy’s place (and thanks to Nancy) where I learned this wonderful and true story.

Recently Roger was over at the local coffee house standing around waiting for his beverage, thumbing through a book that was just lying around there, and…wait…what’s this?! It was This Picture taken in 1965 at a peace march in Boston. Says Roger: ‘Whoooo! HEY! That’s ME!’

Nancy took the day…

August 29

Nancy took the day off for a 4 day weekend kicked off at Bergamot Station with Knut, Brigitte, and Sharon. We enjoyed lunch under the trees at the cafe here…

…and then enjoyed a…

…and then enjoyed a wander through the galleries. I think it was Knut who had read about this exhibit by the physician/photographer Richard Ehrlich who prepared a survey of the Nazi records repository at Bad Arolsen.

From the LA Times: “…The archive contains the names of 17.5 million people who were murdered or persecuted by the Nazis in World War II. Three-hundred and fifty boxes of files pertain to 250,000 children separated from their parents. Thousands of ring binders document what went on in ghettos, prisons and concentration camps, including exterminations and medical experiments.”

Kaitlin playing out in…

August 27

Kaitlin playing out in her back patio. The landlords did a nice thing to gate-up this area that was once a path to the parking. Now Kaitlin can ‘go outside and play’. Isn’t that nice!

Susie and I had…

August 26

Susie and I had an outing today. We’re trading off making a plan which has proved quite delightful. Today was Susie’s day.

We first went to the Long Beach Art Museum, a charming neighborhood collection in a small modern building right across from the Queen Mary.

We went specifically to…

We went specifically to see the Robert Rauschenberg show, not knowing too much what to expect.

What it was was maybe 20 of these large scale prints made from newspaper collages all of them very dark in visual tone and I thought pretty dark in emotional tone too, with the occasional nod to (dark) humor.

I just looked it up – there were 18 total in the series, and standing in the room surrounded by them all was I think a more powerful statement than seeing them one at a time.

What we saw first…

What we saw first though, was this guy, Gordon Peteran’s stuff and we were charmed. First he was a cabinet maker and then turned his constructions into art projects. Very cool.

Next, lunch! We sailed over the Vincent Thomas Bridge into San Pedro and ate at the 6th Ave Bistro, a hot spot in the area of San Pedro currently receiving the gentrification treatment so familiar to Angelenos these days.

(internet pic)

And then we went…

And then we went to visit the Frank Gehry designed Cabrillo Marine Aquarium also in San Pedro.

It’s another down-home kind of place, donations for admission, with what seemed like intense community participation. There were volunteers everywhere, kids and old folks, and…

(internet pic)

…they had a marine…

…they had a marine nursery where they raised various species, especially jelly fish, and passed them around to other aquariums. And if you spoke a question outloud there was always someone around to answer you back.

This morning Brigitte and…

August 21

This morning Brigitte and I drove out to Watts, down the 105, not so far away really, to have a look at the Watts Towers. I haven’t seen them in decades.

This is our tour group: me, Brigitte, a nice guy from Ireland who joined mid-way, and our guide, the lovely and charming Crystal. You can’t get inside now due to the big tower that has the scaffolding so she just walked us around pointing out interesting bits and doing the bio. It was more interesting and entertaining than either of us expected.

The scaffolding is coming…

The scaffolding is coming down around March ’09 so you have plenty of time to plan your visit.

There are the two tall towers and several other pavillions and pagodas to make up the whole site as well as all the decorated walls.

Originally every single surface…

Originally every single surface was covered with decorations so when you see an empty spot it means the colored bits fell off and then they just re-cover the exposed metal with new cement but they do not attempt any restoration.

There is a nice park associated with the towers (it is an actual State Park now), a very evident security presence, and two other buildings for art display, classes, lectures, and other community projects. Really, worth the outing.

Next we went to…

Next we went to get Marsha for lunch. She had a new and trendy yet old and friendly place in mind which turned out to be closed so instead of eating nearby and enjoying the 1920s architectual gems at Adams and Figuroa, we went to the Cathedral.

The cafe there is great, both Marsha and Brigitte aclaimed the gift shop…

…and we all love…

…and we all love the Cathedral, each for our own not-so-private reasons. (Marsha loves this image from the central panel so much her copy is the second piece of art she put up in her new home.)

Next, Nancy and The…

Next, Nancy and The Big Buildings. This is Brigitte’s photo and she has many a many more.

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That’s Brigitte catching her…

That’s Brigitte catching her shot of the Bonaventure. We got a good fix on shots from way up in the sky, the 52nd floor of Nancy’s building.

And instead of rushing off to the show at the Fashion Institue we wandered around between buildings coming upon great sculpture, green and colorful gardens, fountains, and places to just sit.

Kaitlin is showing us…

August 20

Kaitlin is showing us her new handsome gold shoes. (I had a hard time getting them buckled up…which made me feel a bit sorry for Cynthia who, if I remember rightly, never did get gold shoes.)

Kaitlin and I had fun Again!

Leslie (red skirt, tank…

Leslie (red skirt, tank top), who lives in the teeny-tiny cottage, had herself a birthday party in the yard. Everyone was having a grand time and when I got home around 9pm the place was quiet and cleaned-up. Good party Leslie.

I spent the afternoon-evening…

I spent the afternoon-evening at Gideon’s 10th birthday party. Happy Birthday Gideon! He was most excited about reaching a 2 digit age.

Remember when you were 10? When you first hit 2 digits? I remember exactly thinking ‘wow, 2 digits’…nothing more, just that.

Burt and I went…

August 15

Burt and I went to the Oxnard Air Show today which was plenty big fun and source of an uncountable number of reflective surfaces.

And then we waited…

And then we waited and waited and…and…WAITED. Something about no-good-nicks who wouldn’t get off the runway. The waiting went on for an hour!

And then, PLANES! But…

And then, PLANES! But by then we were so tired from waiting, we left shortly after. Still, Fun, and the weather was faabulous.

(cheaters never prosper?)

Out walking in the…

August 14

Out walking in the Marina with Roger and Sandy, it was perfect late afternoon weather for a wander.

The sail boats were…

The sail boats were out in force, many more than these. They looked like a class, all doing follow-the-leader.

Dinner with the guys….

August 13

Dinner with the guys. This is our second time at El Torito Grill in the Sherman Oaks Galleria that we are coming to favor for freeway-close convenience and Happy Hour value.

Bill is recently back from Manila and soon off to Lisbon. Ken is recently back from Egypt and soon off to Russia. No wonder we have a hard time finding dates!

Nancy Artz! Thank…

August 12 pm

Nancy Artz! Thank you!! This is The Capitol Group box. Sitting next to Nancy is one of her colleagues surrounded by his three guests including the man standing…

…and here is the…

…and here is the same standing man, same spot. Wow, what a way to enjoy the Hollywood Bowl and the LA Philharmonic Orchestra.

Like with the Lang Lang rehearsal I went to several weeks ago, the sound quality was really Really impressive. And sitting in a chair, with a back and arms, (and if you’re crazy short you can put your feet up on the edge of the box), what a treat.

And by total coincidence…

And by total coincidence since Nancy did get these tickets from her company, assigned randomly I think, and then invited me, the coincidence being I happen to have known this conductor back when I was a teenager and he just a few years older. Hi Lenny!

Here he is conducting the audience in The Star Spangled Banner…

…and here taking the…

…and here taking the final ovations. Between The Star Spangled Banner and the ovations we got to listen to some killer Philip Glass and an Edward Elgar piece.

What a grand evening!

Angela was feeling under-the-weather…

August 12 am

Angela was feeling under-the-weather today so I went by to do a little of this and that. I had to leave early-ish though because Nancy had invited me to her company’s Corporate Box at the Hollywood Bowl(!), pix to follow.

Synchro-Diving? Must be…

August 10

Synchro-Diving? Must be the Olympics! I’m lovin’ how you can lay around with your laptop and surf all the highlights or watch a whole game if you want, and with just a kindly smattering of commercials. Very very cool at (www.)NBColympics.com.

It’s also been ‘fun’ trying to identify/remember which flag goes with which country. For example can you picture the flag of Indonesia, or the flag of Poland?

An odd coincidence in that yesterday I went shopping with Windy who was redecorating her bathroom and then today I went shopping with Marsha who was redecorating her bathroom. I bought nothing of course but then there’s no coincidence in that.

(nbc photo)

Darryl’s new office! …

August 7

Darryl’s new office! Wow! Behind where I am standing is a big comfy couch. The cool wall with the shelf continues on with more windows, pictures, etc.

There’s also a reception room with two desks for when the Zodeca guys who usually work from home need to come in, a smaller office for one of Darryl’s employees who is around more, a storage/supplies room with the coffee machine and the microwave, and…

…Entertainment FORCE, being Jed…

Entertainment FORCE, being Jed (of Katie, Jed, and Nora) and Jed’s writing partner Scott, who rent this room in the suite. Behind where I am standing, instead of a couch they’ve got a giant flat panel tv which they decided they Had to have since after all they do write for tv.

I should mention the office is right on Ventura Blvd surrounded by the trendy, hip and cool restaurants and shops of central Sherman Oaks, and an eleven minute walk from home. Soo cool!

Anyone out there who…

August 6

Anyone out there who has ever done a big home improvement project knows some measure of the near-intolerable frustration that comes with sub-contractors and the law of unintended consequences. Add to that the Permit Process (Rosie’s in Culver City) and at some point in The Process, you will weep in dispair.

Birthday Girl Fay is lending moral support…

…and then she needs…

…and then she needs to take a break. Nothing like some good face time with the cats when you need a break.

It’s Bon Voyage Hilda…

August 5

It’s Bon Voyage Hilda who is going to Iran without me. Bummer. For a US passport holder it’s just such a pain to get in.

US passport holders do go all the time though. You can go with an authorized group (you can just sign up for the big bucks) or you can get invited by someone there who has filed the proper/necessary papers (education institutions, arts organizations, etc. do it regularly but I’m not so sure about individuals).

Hilda was going to ask one of her relatives to do the invitation thing but I didn’t want to get anyone else involved just-in-case. So Hilda is going to file the papers while she’s there…so maybe next time!

Sandy and I went…

August 4

Sandy and I went for a nice stroll along the Venice boardwalk today. We walked all the way from Washington Blvd! Oh yea Sandy! You GO!

Rosie put on a…

Rosie put on a lovely festivo outside at the Acapulco in San Pedro. Marsha and Rosie both grew up in San Pedro as did many of the other attendees and as such there was an old home week feel about it all.

So here I am…

August 2 pm

So here I am with Bill showing him the website I made for Mindy to share stories and photos while she’s in Zambia. That’ll be good! I’ll post the link once Bill’s got it all caught up.

Note the mini-data center there on the table. Oh yeah, Lovin’ my new craigslist computer.

My poor sad computer…

August 2 am

My poor sad computer is dying a slow lingering anguished death. It needs a morphine drip. Now the screen is not only full of colored and grey stripes, the entire left third is throbbing with shimmering pixels, and most unbearably…

…the cursor has gone…

…the cursor has gone quite MAD tearing around the screen as though possessed.

So while I WaitWaitWait for the long promised new led-backlight-matte screens, I spent two hundred bucks on an old thinkpad from craigslist.

I went downtown to pick it up from ‘the kid’ and took some photos while I was at it. These photos actually, and I loaded, photoshopped, and uploaded them on this new/old computer. Now I remember too why I have such a soft spot for thinkpads. This is one gorgeous keyboard even on a 12″ machine.

This view is going…

This view is going to be gone quite soon as they are already digging the pit for the next highrise right here.

When you’re in it…

When you’re in it actually walking around it feels so much more interesting that just whizzing by on the freeway.

Marsha Moves! I…

August 1

Marsha Moves! I spent Wednesday and Thursday lending a hand and Friday resting. That’s Marija and Ann helping, and Maryanne and Alicia helped too.

Marsha survived without requiring hospitalization.

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